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The reproduction of this book has been 
made possible through the sponsorship 
of the Western New York Genealogical 
Society, Inc., Hamburg, N.Y. 

A Reproduction by 

Unigraphic, Inc. 

1401 North Fares Avenue 

EvansviDe, Indiana 47711 

nineteen hundred and seventy-six 


CHAPTER l.^Buffalo Before the War of i8i2— The Firet Setiler— The Site of the City — 

Wm. Johnston — Martin Middaugh's Arrival —A French Nobleman's Description of Buffalo 
in 1795 —The Firet Inn-Keeper— James Brisbane's Notes on Buffalo in 1798— The First 
Mechanic— Mrs. Ransom's Heroism — The Firet Birth in Buffalo— Joseph Ellicott and 
the Survey— A Prospective City— Wm. Peacock Describes Buffalo in 1799 — Application 
for School Lot — The name " Buffalo** vs, ** New Amsterdam "— Dr. Cyrenius Chapin — 
The Firet Preacher — The Firet Murder — Survey of the Village — Street Names — The 
Firet Blacksmith — His Quarrel with *' Young King"— A Politician's Arrival— Outer and 
Inner Lot Maps — Lots Sold in 1804 — Prices of Lots — The Firet Carriage in Erie 
Counly — An Indian Thief and his Punishment — Arrival of William Hodge — Louis 
Stephen Le Couteulx de Caumont — The Firet Post Route— Rev. Timothy Dwight's 
Description of Buffalo— The Contractor's Store — Judge Samuel Tupper — Other Early 
Settlere— Buffalo in 181 1 — Early Merchante — A Reform Society— The Firet News- 
paper—Extracts from Early Numbere— The Approaching Conflict— Black Rock Before 
the War of 181 2 — Boundaries of the Proposed Villages of Upper and Lower Black 
Rock — The Old Ferry and its Lessees— The **Rock" and its Uses— The Firm of 
Porter, Barton & Co.— Prices of Salt in Early Yeare— The Firet Rivalry between Black 
Rock and Buffalo 13 

CHAPTER U.— Buffalo and Black Rock in ike War-- Destruction of the Two Villages — Their 
Fortifications — Cannonading of Black Rock — William Doreheimer's Recount of the 
Burning of the Villages — Incidents — Mre. Bidwell's Flight — A Lale Breakfast — 
Peace Movements — The Riot at Pomcroy's Hotel— "Hank" Johnson's Heroism — 
The St. John Family — A Heroic Woman — Massacre of Mre. Lovcjoy — Preservation 
of Valuables — Alfred Hodge's Escape — Samuel Wilkeson's New Acquaintance — 
Flight of William Hodge's Family — Job Hoysington's*Last Shot — Mr. Keep's Death 

— The Killed and Captured — General Flight — Treachery Under a Flag of Truce 56 

CHAPTER in.— Tke Second Buffalo as a Village— Peace— General Rejoicings over the Event 

— Dcparturt of the Army from Buffalo — The Second Newspaper — Prominent Arrivals 

— Rebuilding of the Village — Revival of Business — Opening of the Courts — Brick- 
yard Established — A Period of ** Hard Times " — The Canal Project — Incorporation of 
the Village — New Ordinances Passed — Last Relic of Slavery — Population in 1820 — 
The Harbor Project— How the Work was Done — The Terminus of the Canal — 
Rivalry between Black Rock and Buffalo— Final Settlement of the Question in Favor 
of Buffalo— Millard Fillmore— Completion of the Canal— The Village in 1825 — The 
Buffalo Hydraulic Company — Jubilee Water Works — A Disastrous Fire — A Young 
City — List of Puichasere of Lots of the Holland Company 75 

History of Buffalo. 

CHAPTER W, "-Buffalo as a City^ First ElectioQ of City Officers — The Cholera Epidemic 

of 1832 — Incidents of the Scourge — The Board of Health and " The Old Sexton »' — 
First Meeting of the Board of Aldermen — The Panic of i835-'36 — The City in 1836 
— The Patriot War — Death of Dr. Chapin — Reorganization of the School System — 
Establishment of a Recorder's Court and the Superior Court— The Great Flood of 
J 844 — The »* University of Buffalo" — The Cholera Epidemic of 1849 — Enlargement 
of the City in 1853— The Financial Crisis of 1857— The War of the Rebellion — Com- 
parison of the City of 1862 with that of 1836 — The Park System — City Improvemente. 113 

CHAPTER V.^The Germans ^/i^M/ai^— Characteristics of the German Element — Propor- 
tion of German Population in Buffalo — Whence they Emigrated — The Old Lutherans — 
Mecklcnburgcrs and Alsatians — The First German Settler in Buffalo — "Water John *'— 
Jacob Siebold's Arrival — The Firet Brewer, Rudolph Baer— An Early Teacher of lan- 
guages—The First Potter in Buffalo— The Oldest German Resident of the City — The 
German Element in 1828 — Arrivals of Settlers in 1831 — The German Press — The 
German Young Men's AsM>ciation — Its Objects — First Members — Music Hall and its 
Projectors — German Musical Societies — Secret Societies — The German Bank of Buf- 
falo — German American Bank — Buffalo German Insurance Company — The German 
Churches 150 

CHAPTER VI. — Commerce and Navigation — Commercial Importance of Buffalo — First 
American Vessel on Lake Erie — Other Early Vessels — Porter, Barton & Co.'s Fleet in 
1806 — Augustus Porter's Reminiscences -* Pioneer Commanders and their Vessels — 
Buffalo as a Port of Entry— Entries at the Port August 15, 181 5 — Porter. Barton & 
Co.'s Warehouse at Black Rock — Early Transportation Firms — Lake Marine of 18 16 — 
Enrollment of Vessels in the District of Buffalo Creek in 1817, 1818 and 1819 — Town- 
send & Coit — Shipping Owned in Buffalo in 1818 — The First Steamer — Her Passage 
Up the River — The Second Steamer — Captain Levi Allen's Reminiscences — Captain 
Sam Ward's Trip to New York — Captain Daniel Dobbins — Captain Fred. S. Miller 
and Other Early Commanders — Development of Lake Commerce Incident Upon the 
Construction of the Canal — First Shipments of Wheat — Captain A. Walker's Memories 
of the Early Commercial Men of Buffalo — Shipbuilding — The First Propeller on the 
Lake — The Tug Fleet — Transportation Companies — The Lumber Interest — The 
Coal Trade of Buffalo — The Live Stock Interest — Canal Commerce 180 

CHAPTER VII.— The Elevator Interests -- T\ie First Steam Grain Elevator in the World — 
A High Honor for Buffalo — Old Methods of Ix>ading and Unloading Grain — Joseph 
Dart's Experiment — Its Pronounced Success — The First Vessel Unloaded by Steam — 
Contrast between Old and New Methods of Handling Grain — Increase of Grain Receipts 
Incident upon the Establishment of Elevators — Rapid Building of Elevators — Conse- 
quent Competition in Elevator Charges — Organization of the Western Elevating Com- 
pany — Its Permanence and Success — Record of the Building, Burning and Rebuilding 
of Buffalo Elevators 214 


CHAPTER Wlh^Financial Interests ^Thit First Bank in Buffalo— The Bank of Niagara 

and Its Officers— Its Early Reverses — A S^econd Bank Projected — The United States 

Bank and Its Directors — Opening of Subscription Books for the Bank of Buffalo — 

An Injunction Upon the Project — Its Removal — The First Board of Directors — A 

Speculative Mania in 1835-^36-^ Marvelous Transactions in Land— The Final Crash and 

its Disastrous Effects — The Banks Involved — Injunctions Against the Banks — A Panic 

Meeting— The Era of ** Hard Times " — Ben jamin Rathbun's Career— The Panics of 

1857 and 1873-74 — History of the Banks of Buffalo — Saving Aid Associations 222 

CHAPTER IX^-^Manufaeturing and fVJkolesale Interests — AdYtaiiMges of Buffalo as a 
Manufacturing Center — Development of Manufacturing interests — The "Association 
for the Encouragement of Manufacturing in the City of Buffalo" — The Iron Indus- 
try — Furniture Manufacturing — The Leather Industry — The Brewing Interest — 
Malting in Buffalo — The Milling Interest — Manufacture of Boots and Shoes — Miscel- 
laneous Manufactures — The Wholesale Trade of Buffalo — Growth of Trade in the 
City 237 

CHAPTER X.—Insunmee Cam/anies of ^M/7a^ — Magnitude of the Insurance Business — 
The First Company in Buffalo — Its Officers and Changes — Some of its First Policies — 
The '' Mutual Insurance Company of Buffalo '* — The Second Local Company — The 
"Western Insurance Company of Buffalo*' — Companies Organized in Buffalo and now 
in Existence — The Gemutn Insurance Company— Its Unquali6ed Success — Its Magnifi- 
cent Building — The ** Union Fire Insurance Company of Buffalo*' — The ** Erie County 
Mutual Insurance Company " — The " Buffalo Insurance Company ** — General Insur- 
ance Interests of the City 269 

CHAPTER yil.--The Churches ^1\it. First Preacher in Buffalo — Early Missionaiy Work 
— The First Buffalo Church Society — The First Church Building — Organiza- 
tion of the First Presbyterian Society — Names of the Members — History of the 
Church — Other Presbyterian Churches — Their Pastors and Officers — Episcopal 
Churches of Buffalo — History of St. Paul's — Other Societies of thu) Denomination — 
The First Baptist Church and Its Successors — Separate Church Societies — Catholic 
Churches — The Israelites and their Religious Societies 275 

CHAPTER Wl.—EdMcational Institutions of Buffalo ^Tht Early Schools— Meagre Facilities 
for Obtaining Education before the War of 181 2 — The Literary and Scientific Academy — 
The First Public School Building — A Quaint Subscription Paper— History of the Old 
School House — The First Teachers— A School Tax Roll of 1818 — Districts Nos. i and 
2 — The "High School Association"— Reorganization of the City Schools— The Work 
of Oliver G. Steele, as Superintendent — Ward Committees on School Improvement — 
Success of the Plans Adopted — List of School SuperintendenU — Description of 
Schools at the Piesent Time — The Normal School — Private and Parochial Educational 
Institutions 309 

History of Buffalo. 

CHAPTER Xllh^ yfftmtahjm in BufaU—lntivLtnct of the Press— The First Newspaper 

in Ba£falo — Its Legitimate Successor, the CouriiT'-^ The Largest Show Printing House 
in the World — The Commercial Advertiser — Details of its Growth — The Express — 
Successive Owners, Editors and Managers— The First Successful Sunday Newspaper in 
Bu£falo — The Sunday Netos — Establishment of the Daiiy News — The Daify Tele- 
graph — The Sunday Times — .EsUblishment of the Daily Times — The Sunday Truth 
— Religious, Medic%l and Temperance Journals — Literary Papers — The Mortuary 
Record of Buffalo Newspapers 326 

CHAPTER Xl\.— Secret Societies in Erie County — Tree Masonry— Beginning of the Order 
Among the Early Settlers — The First Lodge — History of the Western Star Lodge — Its 
Fiist Officers — Records of Succeeding Lodges — List of District Deputy Grand Mas- 
ters — History of Chapters, Councils, Commandertes, etc. — Ceremonies in which 
Masonic Organizations have Taken Part — Odd Fellows' Lodges — Other Secret Societies 
of Buffalo 35E 

CHAPTER Xy.— The Medical Pt of ession of Erie County— The Medical Profession in Early 
Days — Eminent Names at the Beginning of the Century — Imperfect Medical Educa- 
tion — Attempt to Rescue the Science from Obscurity — Legislative Action — Medical 
Societies — The Profession in Erie County — The First County Society — Dr. Cyrenius 
Cbapin — An Opposition Society — Dr. Ebenezer Johnson — Sketch of Dr. J. W . Trow- 
bridge— The Buffalo Medical Association — Dr. J. E. Marshall — Other Biographical 
Sketches 414 

CHAPTER XVL — The Bench and Bat of Erie County — Organization of Niagara County — 
Formation of Erie County— The First Court in Buffalo — The First Judges — The 
Attorneys of Buffalo Before 1812 — Prominent Lawyers of the Next Decade — Riding 
the Circuit — Compensation of Early Lawyers — The Courts of Common Pleas and Gen- 
eral Sessions of the Peace — Their Character — The Recorder's Court of Buffalo — Sketch 
of Judge Ebenezer Walden — Biographic Notes of Other Deceased Attorneys and Jus- 
tices — Present Courts and Judges of Erie County — The Present Bar of the County 452 

CHAPTER XVII.— r^^- Parh System of Buffalo — Bene^Xi of Public Parks— Their Influ- 
ence on Communities — A City without a Healthful, Free Resort — First Movement 
Looking to the Establishment of a Great Park in Buffalo — The Men who Instigated 
it — Action by the Mayor and Council — Engagement of Frederick Law Olmstead — 
Extracts from His Report — Adoption of His Plans — Beginning of the Work — First 
Commissioners' Issue of Bonds — Progress of Work from Year to Year — Present Extent 
of the Park — Description of its Different Sections 487 

CHAPTER XMin.'-Buffalo Cemeteries-^ The First Burial PUce in Buffalo — Its First Occu- 
pant -^ Captain William Johnston's Burial — The Old Franklin Square Burying Ground — 
Who Established it — Its First Tenant — Other Prominent Interments — Description of 
Other City Burying Grounds— The Black Rock Burying Ground— The Matthews and 
\yilcox Burial Ground — Church Cemeteries — Soldiers' Burial Places — Forest Lawn — 
Its Beginning, Dedication, etc. — Its Enlargement and Improvement — Value of the 
Cemetery Property — Dedication Ceremonies 502 


CHAPTER XIX,— a fy I?f^rim£nis and /fistitutioms— Tht Buffalo Fire Department ~ First 

Oiganixation — The First Fire Company — Construction of Cisterns — List of All Com- 
panies and Dates of Organization — The First Chief Engineer — His Successors to the 
Present Time — Demotaliiation of the Department — First Board of Fire Commission- 
ers — Fire Alarm Telegraph Introduced — Establishment of a Paid Department — Dis- 
astrous Fires — The Fireman's Benevolent Association — Buffalo Police Force — First 
Chief of Police — Snccessive Chiefs and Superintendents — Present Force and Pre- 
cincts — The Health Department — The First Cholera Epidemic — The First Board of 
Health and their Labors — List of Health Physicians — Health Department as at Present 
Constituted — The City Water Works— The First Water Company — Organization of 
the City Water Works Company — Incorporators — Different Plans — Details of Con- 
struction — Magnitude of the Works — Change in Officials — The Postal Service in 
Buffalo and Black Rock — List of Postmasters — Early Mail Routes — Gas and Electric 
Light Companies — Street Car Lines 513 

C/M PTER XX. — Literary a$ul Riligiams A ssaeiaHons— -The First Literary Association in 
Buffalo — The ** Buffalo Lyceum "-^Organization of the '* Young Men's Association " — 
Its First Officers — A Hard Struggle and Final Triumph — Tabular History — Present 
Management of the Association — The Buffalo Historical Society — Organization and 
Objects — Constitution — Incorporation — List of Presidents of the Society — The Gros- 
venor Library — A Beneficent Bequest — A Valuable Library — The Young Men's Chris- 
tian Association — The Parent "Union*' — Change of Name — Financial Struggles — 
The New Building — List of Presidents and Present Officers — The Young Men's Catholic 
Association — A Valuable Library— The Mechanics' Institute — Law Library — The 
Catholic Institute and its Library — Other AssocinHons 530 

CHAPTER XW,— Public AmustmenU, Clubiy Etc,^ in Buffalo — TYi^ First Public Amuse- 
ments in 'Buffalo— A Pioneer Caravan — The Egyptian Mummy Show — The First 
Theatre in Buffalo— Old Time Performances — The First Circus — The Old Eagle 
Street Theatre — The First Gas Used in Buffalo — The Opening Night in the Eagie 
Street Theatre — An Old Announcement — Burning of the Theatre — A Complimentary 
Benefit — The New " Metropolitan Theatre " — Rebuilding of the Eagle Street Theatre — 
Its Transformation into St James* Hall — The Academy of Music and its Management — 
The Buffalo Opera House, now the Adelphi — Wahlc's Opera House — The Clubs of 
Buffalo — The Buffalo Club and its Incorporators — The City Club of Buffalo — The 
Ix>tus, Press, Polo and Other Clubs 542 

CHAPTER XXll,— Hospitals, Asylums, Ci*flnV»>/, ^/f.— The Buffalo General Hospifal — The 
First Hospital Meeting; — Successive Presidents of the Institution — The Training School 
for Nurses — Hospital of the Sisters of Charity — The Good Samaritan Eye and Ear 
Infirmary — The Homeopathic Hospital — Buffalo Eye and Ear Infirmary — Buffalo 
Surgical Infirmary — The City's Dispensaries — The Charitable Institutions and Asylums 
of the City 549 

History of Buffalo. 


Abell. William H., portrait, (pwt i,) facinfc. ^. ... si6 

Ad«ns,.James, portrait, (put 2,) imdng, i 

Austin, Stephen G., portrait, (put i,) facing..... ~ 460 

Bailey, Daniel E., portrait, (part 2,) facing 96 

Bennett, David S., portrait, (part 2,) facing 2 

Bennett, Philander, portrait, (part i,) facing , 458 

Bilge, Martin H., portrait, (part i,*) facing 258 

BrajTton, S. N., M. D., portrait, (part 2,) facing 6 

BxQfh, Alexander, portrait, (part 2,) facing. « 8 

Bryant, William C, portrait, (part x,) facing 482 

Buffalo City, map of in 1847, (part i,) 105 

Buffalo Harbor, view of in 1825. (part x,) 100 

Buffalo Harbor, view o€ in 1826. (part i,) I91 

Buffalo Village, map of in 1825, (part i,), xoi 

Buffalo Village, view of from the light-house in 1826, (part i,) .• X94 

Buffalo Village, map of the outer lots, (part i,) 30 

Buffalo Village, map of the inner lots, (part i,) 31 

Burwell, Bryant, portrait, (part i,} facing. 424 

Cluk, John Whipple, portrait, (part 2,) facing. ^.... io 

Cluk, Thomas, portrait, (part 2,) facing 13 

Coit, George, portrait, (part i,) facing. , 80 

Cutler, Abner, portrait, (part i,) facing 242 

Daboll, (Hrrett C, portrait, (part i,) facing „ 450 

Dick, Robert, portrait, (part 2,) facing. 18 

Fargo, Jerome P., portrait, (part 2,) facing 33 

Firmenich, Joseph, portrait, (part i,) facing. 354 

GtLics; George B., portrait, (part 2,) facing..^ .>.. 34 

Gtty, Charles C. F., M. D., portrait, (part 1,) facing 550 

Glenny, W. H., portrait, (part i,) facing 266 

Greene, William H., portrait, (part i,) facing. 474 

Greene, J. C, M. D., portrait, (part i,) facing 442 

Guthrie, S. S., portrait, (part 2,) facing 102 

Hammond, William W., portrait, part i,) facing ^„.. 484 

Harboi; improvements, map of proposed in 1836. (part i,) g-j 

Harrison, James C, portrait, (part i.) facing, .^ ^28 

Holmes, Britain, portrait, (part i,) between 356, 357 


Plolmes, Edward, portrait, (part zj between 2$6, 257 

Howard, Ethan H., portrait, (part 2,) facii^ ..^,«.,..^ « .., 32 

Howard, George, portrait, (^)art i,).facin£..«..» •••••.••^» ••■ 512 

Howard, K. L., portrait, (part r,) facing....^ - 138 

Jewett, Elam R., portrait, (part i,) fadsg. ...^^ 528 

Jewett, Sherman S., portrait, (part a,) facing. ^ 40 

Kip, Henry, portrait, (part 2,) facing...^ 44 

Lake Erie and the Bay in 1816, Tiew. of from Buffalo, (part i,) 83 

Lang, Geriiard, portrait. ^»rt 2,) facing «... ^ .• ..4... 76 

Lynde, U. C^ M. D., portrait, (part I,) facing , 444 

Lyth, John, portrait, (part 2,^ facing.. » 46 

McCnnc, C. W., portrait, ^ait i,) facing.... .»... 334 

McMichaeL l^J)., M. D., portrait, ^»rt 1,) iicing 548 

Manning, John B., portrait, (part 2.) facing... 50 

Manhall, O. H., portrait, (part i,)facing «^...., 534 

tfanhall, John E., portrait, (part z,) facing *........ , 420 

Hasten, Joseph G., portrait, (part i,) facing..... < ..^ 118 

Mesmer, Midiael, portrait, (part a,) facing 56 

Mixer, S. F., M. D., portrait, (part I,) facing. 436 

Moore, A. C, portrait, (part 2,) facing ^... 58 

Moolton, John F., portrait, (part z,) facing 200 

New Amsterdam, map of the Tillage of, in Z804, (part z,) 27 

Norton, Charles D., portrait, fpart z,) facing 476 

Noye, John T., portrait, (part 2,) facing 60 

Palmer, George, portrait, (part 2,) facing 62 

Potter, W. W., M. D., portrait, (part 2,) facing 66 

Pease, Sheldon, portrait, (part 2,) tacing 74 

Phelps, Orson, portrait, (part 2,}. facing 64 

Pratt, G. F., M. D., portrait, (part z,) facing ^ 426 

Pratt, Ssmnd F., portrait, (part z,) facing ^* 34 

Putnam, James O , portrait, (part 2,) facing 53 

Ramsdell, Orrin P^ portrait, (part z,) facing .„, 364 

Richmond, J. M., portrait, (part z,) facing 230 

Rockwell, Augustus, portrait, (part 2,) facing , gg 

Rogen> Henry W., portrait, (part z,) facing , 4^^ 

Rogers, Shennan S„ portrait, (part z,) facing , j2g 

Rumiin, Henry, portrait, (part 2,) facing g, 

Rumsey, Aaron, portrait, (jmit z,) between 244, 24$ 

Rumsey,. Bronson C, portrait, (part z,) between , 244^ 245 

Scheu, Solomon, portrait, (part z,) facing ^ ^j2 

Schoellkopf, J. F^ portrait, (part 2,) facing g^ 

Skinner, John B., portrait, (part 2), facing g^ 

Smith, Moses, portrait, (part z,) facing , , 32a 

Smith, William Henry, portrait, (part 2,) facing ^ 

Sterenson, Edward L., portrait, (part z,) facing ^ 284 

lo History of Buffalo. 


Stewart, Robert G., portnit, (part ajfadng 92 

Thompson, Sheldon, portrait, (part i,)f^n&— •« • i8d 

Tifft, George W., portrait, (part i,) facing 26S 

Tillinghast, James, portrait, (part 2,)fadng 94 

Townsend, Charles, portrait, (part z,) facing - 46 

Tucker, J. K., portrait, (part i,) facing 500 

Urban, George, portrait, (part i,) facing 154 

Utley, Horace, portrait, (part 2,) facing 108 

Warren, Joseph, portrait, (part I,) facing 332 

Watson, Stephen V. R., portrait, (part i,) facing 530 

Wells, Chandler Joseph, portrait, (part 2,) facing 112 

White, Russell J., M. D., portrait, (part 2,) facing ^ 116 

Williams, Gibson T., portrait, (part i,) facing. 234 

Wright, Alfred P., portrait, (part i,) facing 232 

Wyckoff, C. C, M. D., portrait, (part i,) facing 440 

Young, Charles E., portrait, (part I,) facing 392 

Ziegele, Albert, Sr., portrait, (part i,) facing 158 


Abell, William Hawks, 25 

Adams, James, i 

Austin, Stephen Goodwin, * i 

Bailey, Daniel E., 26 

Bennett, David S 2 

Bennett, Philander, 5 

Birge, Martin H., 6 

Brayton, Samuel Nelson 6 

Brush, Alexander, 8 

Burwell, Bryant, 10 

Clartc, John Whipple, .. 10 

Clark, Thomas, 12 

Coit, George, 14 

C^utler, ^bner, 16 

Daboll, Garrett C, 18 

Dick, Robert, 19 



Fttgo, Jerome Freeman, 33 

Faigo, William GeoT]ge , 54 

Gay, Charles Curtis Feon, M; D., ai 

Gates, George B., ^..^. 23 

Gknnj, William H., a6 

Greene, Joseph C, ^.^ 97 

Greene, William Henry, • ay 

Gathrie, Solomon Sturges, - , 102 

Hammond, William W., 30 

Harrison, James Cooke, 75 

Holmes, Edwardand Britain, 31 

Howard, Ethan H*. 32 

Howard, George,.. • •••• ••• •... ^a 

Howard, Rnfus L,, i 34 

Jewett, Elam R., 36 

Jewett, Sherman S., 40 

Kip, Henry, , ^ 

Lang, Gerhard, _ jj 

Lynde, Uri C. 45 

Creswell, John A., ^ 

Held. Frederick, ^ .j 

Bntlcr. Edward Hubert, ^^ 

Lyth, John, ^^ 

McCune, Charles Willard, ^ 

Mack, Norman E., ^ -^ 

Manning, John Baker, ,. ^^ ^^ 

Marshall, Dr. John Ellis, -^ 

Marshall, Orsamus Holmes, ^ -» 

Matthews, James N., ^ -^ 

Mesmer, Michael, , ^ -^ 

Mixer, Sylvester Frederick -g 

Moore, Augustus C, - 

MonltOQ. John F., 

Norton, Charles Davis, ^ ^ 

Noye, JcAnT., ^ ^^ 

Palmer, George, ^^ 

Pease, Sheldon ^^ 

Phdps, Orson ^ 

Potter, William Warren, ^ 

Pratt, Gotham Flint...... ^ 

Pratt, Pascal P., 1....!,.,.! 87 

Pratt, Samuel F., ^ 

pQtnam, James O ^ 

Rarasdell, Orrin P., ^ 

Retnecke, Ottomar, ^^^ g 

12 History of Buffalo. 

Richmond, Jewett McWin, 72 

Rogers, Henry W., 77 

Rogers, Sherman 8., 79 

Rohr, Mathias, ^ 80 

Rumnll, Henry, 81 

Rockwell, Augiasttts, r 88 

Scheu, Solomon, » 84 

Schoellkopf, Jacob F 85 

Skinner, John B., 85 

Smith, Moses, 89 

Smith, William H ». , 90 

Stevenson, Edward L., • 90 

Stewart Robert G., 9a 

Thompson, Sheldon, 97 

TiflFt, George W., 104 

Tillinghast, James, ^ 94 

Townsend, Charles, , 108 

Urban, George 109 

Utley, Horace, 109 

Warren. James D. * no 

Warren, Joseph, no 

Watson, Stephen Van Rensselaer,, 118 

Wells, Chandler J 112 

White, Rossell Jesse, H5 

Williams, Gibson T i 116 

Wright. Alfred P 117 

WyckoflF, Cornelias C, M. D 1. i« 

Young, Charles Edward, ,*,.. ^ i20 

Zesch, Frank H., b 119 

Ziegele, Albert, 8r., » 1x9 

[-jisjORy OF pjrr/^LO^ 



The First Settler — The Site of the City — Wm. Johnston — Martin MiddaugVs Arrival — A French 
Nobleman's Description of Buffalo in 1795— The First Inn-Keeper — James Brisbane's Notes 
OD Buffalo in 1798— The First Mechanic — Mrs. Ransom's Heroism — The First Birth in 
Buffalo — Joseph Ellicott and the Siirrey — A Prospective City — Wm. Peacock Describes 
Buffalo in 1799— Application ^^^ School Lot— The Name "Buffalo," vs. ** New Amsterdam,"— 
Dr. Cyrenius Chapin — The First Preacher — The First Murder— Survey of the Village— 
Street Names— The First Blacksmith — His Quarrel with "Young King" — A Politician's 
Arrival — Outer and Inner Lot Maps — Lots Sold in 1804— Prices of Lots — The First Car- 
nage in Erie County — An Indian Thief and his Punishment— Arrival of Wm. Hodge — Louis 
Stephen Le Couteulx de Caumont — The First Post Route — Rev. Timothy Dwight's Descrip- 
tion of Buffalo— The Contractors Store — Judge Samuel Tupper— Other Early Settlers — 
Buffalo in 18 11 — Early Merchants — A Reform Society — The First Newspaper— Extracts 
from Early Numbers— The Approaching Conflict — Riack Rock Before the War of 1812 — 
Boundaries of the Proposed Villages of Upper and Lower Black Rock — The Old Ferry and its 
I-€ssees — The ''Rock" and its Uses — The Firm of Porter, Barton & Co.— Prices of Salt in 
Early Years — The First Rivalry between Black Rock and Buffalo. 

A HUNDRED years ago, the site of the city of Buffalo was a wilder- 
ness wherein a representative of the race that now constitutes her 
population had not set his foot in permanent settlement. Where 
now extend miles of broad and beautiful thoroughfares, lined with the 
imposing edifices that characterize the most prominent cities of America, 
the Indian then followed the war path or the hunt through the thick forest 
and over the open plain, aud here made his primitive home. Seventy 
years ago the site of the present proud city was a burned and black- 
ened waste far more desolate of aspect than it was before the hand of 
civilization had left its impress there. The growth of Buffalo in that 
comparatively short period of time to its present proud position in the 
great sisterhood of American cities, speaks eloquently of the almost 

14 History of Buffalo. 

unrivaled energy and strong practical vigor of her people and fulfills 
the ardent prophecies of her founders and early settlers. The reader 
of the first volume of this work is now familiar with the first known 
Indian settlement made on the banks of Buffalo Creek in the winter of 
i779-'8o; with the important proceedings of the Buffalo Creek Council 
of July 5, 1788, with other events of that period, and with the transfer 
in i792-*93 of a large tract of land embracing the site of the present 
city of Buffalo, by Robert Morris, the financier of Revolutionary days, 
to representatives of what is known as "the Holland Land Company." 
At this point the history of the city of Buffalo as distinct from that 
of the county and towns given in the preceding volume, may properly 

The derivation of the title to the lands on which Buffalo stands has 
been explained by excellent authority as follows : — 

" The territory now constituting the city, formed a part of the reeion 
granted to the Council of Plymouth by Charles the First in 1620, and by 
Charles the Second to the Duke of York in 1664. It was claimed by both 
New York and Massachusetts under these conflicting charters until in 
December, 1786, by what may be termed an amicable partition, the title 
or rather the preemption of the exclusive right to purchase the lands 
of the Indians was vested in Massachusetts, with the exception of a 
strip one mile wide, extending northerly from Lake Erie along the 
Niagara River, the preemption of which was vested in New York. The 
Indiati title was gradually extinguished by treaties in 1797, 1838 and 
1842. In 1 791, Massachusetts conveyed its interest to Robert Morris, 
who, in 1792, conveyed it in trust for certain gentlemen residing in 
Holland, who being aliens, were unable to hold the legal title. This 
disability was removed by an act of the Legislature passed in 1798, and 
the lands were conveyed to the members of what has since been known 
as the Holland Land Company. Thus the present title to the territory 
in Buffalo embraced in the mile strip is derived from the State of New 
York, and to the remainder, from individuals composing the Holland 
Land Company." 

The city of Buffalo is situated in longitude 2^ 6' 37" west from 
Washington, 446 miles from New York city and 296 miles from Albany. 
Of its climate Mr. S. Ball wrote in 1825 : — 

"The climate is more pleasant than any situation in an equally 
northern latitude in our country and equally healthy. The summers and 
autumns are peculiarly fine ; the lake afforas a gentle breeze during those 
seasons, mucn resembling a sea breeze, but of more elasticity and sweet- 
ness. The winters are less uniform than in most other parts of the country ; 
the snow rarely falls to a greater depth than six inches ; the cold is not 
so severe as in other places in the same latitude situated remote from 
the lake, yet in winter, when the waters are covered with ice the winds 
are often cold and piercing." 

The first building known to have been erected by civilized man on 
the site bf the present city of Buffalo, was a small log house, which was 
built by Cornelius Winney, (or Winne) as early as 1789. One authority 

The First Settler. 15 

gives the date of his arrival as 1783 or 1784.* The building stood near 
the foot of a small hill which descended southward from the preseYit site 
of the Mansion House, and not far from the comer of Washington and 
Quay streets. Winney was a Dutchman from the Hudson River 
country, and came into the wilderness to establish a post for trading 
with the Indians. If this unlettered pioneer cared aught for the sur- 
roundings of his primitive home, from any other than a business point 
of view, he must have been favorably impressed. Although from his 
house southward and towards the lake, Winney beheld only a tract of 
low, swampy, uninviting lands, to the northward the prospect was much 
more attractive. From the crown of the little ascent near his dwelling, 
there stretched away northward, high, rolling lands that sloped grace- 
fully westward to Lake Erie and rose into lofty bluffs along Niagara 
river, falling away more gradually to the level country that reached for 
jtniles to the eastward, mostly forest-covered and unmarred by the hand 
of man. If Cornelius Winney possessed the keen business foresight 
that is indicated by his pushing thus far into the Wilderness to tn^c 
with the Indians, he may have realized the peculiar adaptability and 
superior advantages of the locality for a great city ; or, if a proper appre- 
ciation of the beauties of Nature's handiwork animated his soul, (which 
i& less probable) he may have felt a thrill of admiration for the varied 
favorable aspects of the scene. 

Early in the winter of i78o-'8i, Captain Powell (afterwards Colonel) 
and Lieutenant Johnston, well known to all the early settlers as Captain 
William Johnston, came first to the Indian settlement on Buffalo Creek. 
They were British officers and half-brothers. Captain Powell afterwards 
secured an interest in Winney's store ; he died at an advanced age a 
few miles from Fort Erie. Winney is said to have left the locality soon 
after 1796. Mr. Ketchum expressed the opinion in his work, ** Buffalo 
and the Senecas," that Winney left in 1798, **as Mr. Eggleston, one of 
the surveyors of Mr. Ellicott, writes to him at Schlosser, from Buffalo 
Creek, that he (Ellicott) had better bring some boards to make a map- 
ping table, as there were none to be had in their new location, Mr. 
Winney having carried off those that were in the partition." This is 
probably correct. 

Unlettered denizen of the wilderness that he was, Winney's position 
as the first and for a time the only white settler on Buffalo Creek, gave 
him sufficient prominence to render him of value to the government 
officials, who occasionally sought information from him. The following 

*Wi]luuii Ketchnm in his "Baffalo and the Senecas,*' gives Winney's arriyal as in 1783 pr 1784. 
T^is IS improbable, as Winney was said to be a Hudson River man, who' was on the American side 
in the Revolutionary war, yet came here from Oanada. He oould hardly have gone to Canada and 
•come back here after peace was declared, at so early a date as that given. There are, moreover, 119 
statements in existence regarding Winney nntil about 1791, though there were several visitors here 
between that date and 1784. 

i6 History of Buffalo. 

letter to .General Chapin, then Superintendent of Indian Affairs, is 
quoted as a specimen of Winney's correspondence : — 

" Buffalo Creek, 23d Aug., 1792. 
" I inform Gen. Chapin that about seventy-nine of the Canadian 
Indians is gone to Detroit. They seem to be for warr, and a number of 
Indians to go up. I further inform you that the Indians of this place are 
to ^o up in the first King's vessel that comes down. Prince Edward * is 
arrived at Fort Niagara. Should I hear anything worth while to write, 
I shall let you know. C. WiNnev." 

William Johnston married a wife from the Senecas soon after his 
arrival, and afterwards wielded a powerful influence over the destiny of 
Buffalo. In the year 1/94, he built a small block house near Winney's 
store, and there took up his permanent abode. This house stood, accord- 
ing to Mr. Ketchum, " north of Exchange street and east of Washington 
street" Johnston had early acquired a strong influence over the Indians^ 
who gave him two square miles of land, which embraced within its 
limits the site of the present city of Buffalo. Johnston afterwards agreed 
with the agent of the Holland Land Company, to use his influence with 
the Indians to get this tract included in the Company's purchase, and to 
surrender his own claim to it, in consideration of the Company's convey- 
ing to him by deed six hundred and forty acres lying about six miles from 
the mouth of the cceek and including a certain mill-site and adjacent tim- 
ber lands, with forty-five and one-half acres embracing the improvements 
then owned by Johnston. Four acres of this latter named tract were on 
the " Point." This agreement was afterwards consummated. The 
smaller tract which thus passed into Johnston's hands, was bounded on 
the north by Seneca street, west by Washington street, south by Little 
Buffalo creek, and east by a line that would include the requisite num- 
ber of acres. The four-acre tract was bounded east by Main street, 
southwesterly by Buffalo creek, and northwesterly by Little Buffalo 

" William Johnston may be considered the first land owner in Buffalo. 
He had been employed in the British service in what was termed the 
Indian Department, from the first breaking out of the Revolutionary 
war. Upon the surrender of Fort Niagara to the Americans in 1796, 
and consequent extinguishment of British rule over the Indians, instead 
of withdrawing with the rest of th^ British officers, he chose to remain 
with the Indians, with whom he had become identified by the strongest 
of ties known to our nature. He was, in fact, the leading man at Buffalo 
Creek at the time of the survey and settlement of Buffalo. He was 
respected by the early white inhabitants, as well as by the Indians, and 
died in 1807, at the aee of about sixty-five years. His son John, or 
" Jack," as he was famifiarly called, survived him and inherited his prop- 
erty here, and incumbered it by a mortgage to Joseph Parrish, as agent 
ana trustee for the Cayuga Indians. John Johnston married Ruth 
Barker, daughter of Judge Zenas Barker, in 1808 or 1809; he lived but 

♦ This ••Prince Edward " was, doubtless, Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, father of Queen Victoria. 

Visit of a French Nobleman. ly 

a short time after and died, leaving no children, willing his property to 
his wife, who afterwards married Elisha Fpster. John Johnston had 
much pains taken with his education, pursuing his studies for a time at 
Yale College. He was a young man of fine acquirements and address, 
and after his return from school was employed by Captain Pratt, in his 
store, and at the time of his marriage with Miss Barker, was considered 
one of the most accomplished young men in the place." * 

About the year in question (1794), or a little later, Johnston gave 
consent to Martin Middaugh, who, like Winney, was a Hudson River 
Dutchman, to build a log house near Johnston's block hous6. Middaugh 
had come over from Canada with his son-in-law, Ezekiel Lane,t ^^^ ^^ 
a cooper — ^the first mechanic in Buffalo. At a later date, Middaugh left 
his first location and " squatted " on the south side of Buffalo creek, 
where he died without children, in 1825. Ezekiel Lane died in Buffalo 
in 1865, leaving children. A claim was made by Lane or his descendants, 
to the land upon which Middaugh ^ lived. The courts decided adversely 
to their claims. 

In 1795, a French nobleman, Duke De la Rochefoucauld Liaincourt, 
paid a visit to the little settlement, and said of it : — 

" At the post on Lake Erie, there was a small collection of houses." § 

There was at that time some kind of a public house kept where 
travelers were entertained ; but its larder must have rivaled the famous 
one of Mother Hubbard, for the French visitor writes of it : — 

" There was literally nothing in the house, neither furniture, rum, 
candles nor milk." 

The public house in those days without rum was in a destitute con- 
dition indeed. 

Following is the distinguished Frenchman's further description of 
Buffalo as he then found it : — 

" We at length arrived at the post on Lake Erie, which is a small 
collection of four or five houses, built about a quarter of a mile from the 
lake. We met some Indians on the road, and two or three companies of 
whites. This encounter gave us great pleasure. In this vast wilderness 
a fire still burning, the vestiges of a camp, the remains of some utensil 
that has served a traveler, excite sensations truly agreeable, and which 
arise only in these immense solitudes. 

" We arrived late at the inn, and after a very indifferent supper, we 
were obliged to lie upon the floor in our clothes. There was literally 
nothing in the house ; neither furniture, rum, candles nor milk. After 
murh trouble the milk was procured from the neighbors, who were not as 

♦ Kctchum's " Buffalo and the Scnccas." 

t In a paper now in the archives of the Young Men's Association, Judge Augustus Porter states 
that he passed through Buffalo in 1795, and that there then were living there '* a man by the name 
of Johnstone, the British interpreter ; also, a Dutchman and his family, named >f iddaugh, and an 
Indian trader, named Winne." 

X Middaugh and Lane^s double house was sold to Judge Barker, in 1807 or 1808. 

§ Mr. Ketchum says, in referring to the year 1796, *' It is quite certain there was no other 
house (than Johnston's, Middaugh's and Winne's) here till sometime after this." 

1 8 History of Buffalo. 

accommodating in the way of rum and candles. At lengrth, some arriv- 
ing from the other side of the river (Fort Erie), we seasoned our supper 
with an appetite that seldom fails, and, after passing a very comfoiiable 
evening, slept as soundly as we had done in tne woods. 

" Everything at Lake Erie, — by which this collection of houses is 
called — is aearer than at any other place we visited, for the simple 
reason that there is no direct communication with any other point. 
Some were sick with fever in almost every house." 

The public house or tavern relerred to is supposed to have been 
kept by a man named Skinner, as he is mentioned as a landlord there at 
a little later date. Mr. Ketchum, however infers that John Palmer who, 
"according to Liaincourt, built his house here before 1795," was the 
landlord with whom the French visitor found such meagre accommoda- 
tions. Ketchum says, " Palmer was undoubtedly the first inn-keeper in 
Buffalo." This point cannot, probably, be any more definitely settled.* 

Sometime in the year 1796, probably towards the close, the little 
settlement on Buffalo Creek received an addition to its population by the 
arrival of Asa Ransom, a silversmith, who came from Geneva, with a 
dehcate young wife and an infant daughter named Portia. Ransom 
erected a log house near the liberty pole, comer of Main street and the 
Terrace, and there began 'the manufacture of silver trinkets for the 
Indians. Ransom and his family are credited with being the first to 
bring into Buffalo the simplest refinements of civilized life. 

At this date (1796) a negro who was known as " Black Joe," or 
Joseph Hodge, lived in a cabin a little west of Winney's. He had an 
Indian wife who bore him children. He understood the Seneca language 
and was often employed as an interpreter. He was supposed to be a 
runaway slave, and died at an advanced age, on the Cattaraugus 

It was not very long after the arrival of Mr. Ransom at the little 
settlement that an incident occurred which is worthy of narration. Mn 
Ransom and the other few men in the settlement had gone over to 
Canada to mill, with the exception of Winney and " Black Joe." During 
their absence several Indians came and demanded rum of Mrs. Ransom. 
They were told that she had none, which they disputed. Upon her 
persisting in her statement, one of the Indians suddenly seized her little 
girl, then two years old, and raised his tomahawk threatening the child's 
life. Although frightened almost beyond expression, Mrs. Ransom's 
presence of mind enabled her to immediately promise the Indians the 
rum as best she could by signs and the few words she knew, and then 
asked them to allow her to go up stairs after the liquor. They assented, 

* Palmer remained in Buffalo until 1802, about which time he removed to near Fort Erie, 
where he died. His first wife was a daughter of Lewis Maybee, brother of Sylvanus Maybee, who 
is mentioned elsewhere as one of the early settlers. Lewis Maybee lived a few miles below Black 
Rock, on the Canada side. While Palmer was living in Bufifalo, his first wife died and he after- 
wards married her sister. 

The First Birth in Buffalo. 19 

but insisted on retaining the little girl as a hostage. Mrs. Ransom then 
took her niece, a brave girl of twelve years, and together they went up 
stairs. Once there she quickly tied together a pair of sheets from the 
bed and with them lowered the girl from the window to the ground, 
directing her to hasten to Mr. Winney, hoping that his influence with 
the savages would be sufficient to turn them from their purpose. 

Then the mother waited in a wild fever of anxiety, fearing every 
moment that she would hear the screams of her only child below. 
Finally her fears were increased by the Indians who began pounding on 
the door with their tomahawks ; but before they had beaten it down, 
Winney arrived and induced them to leave the house. The little heroine 
of this event afterwards became Mrs. Christopher M. Harvey. 

In 1797, the "Lake Erie" settlement was further increased by the 
advent of a little daughter in the Ransom family. She was the first 
white child born in Buffalo, or in Erie county. She afterwards became 
Mrs. Frederick B. Merrill, who was long a respected citizen and attorney 
of Buffalo, and was one of the early clerks of Niagara county. 

James Brisbane, one of the pioneers of Batavia, first saw Buffalo in 
October, 1798. He afterwards wrote of it as follows: — 

" There was then the log-house of Middaugh and Lane— a double log- 
house — about two squares from Main street, a little north of the present 
line of Exchange street. Captain Johnston's half log and half framed 
house stood a little east of the main building of the present Mansion House, 
near Washington street. There was a two-story hewed log-house, owned 
by Captain Johnston, about where Exchange street now is, from six to 
eight rods west of Main street, where a tavern was kept by John Palmer. 
This was the first tavern in Buffalo. Palmer afterwards moved over to 
Canada, and kept a tavern there. Asa Ransom lived in a log-house west 
of the Western Hotel. Winne had a log house on the bank of Little 
Buffalo, south of the Mansion House. A Mr. Mayb«e, who afterwards 
went to Cattaraugus, kept a little Indian store in a log building on the 
west side of Main street, about twenty rods north of Exchange street. 
There was also a log house occupied by a man by the name of Robbins. 
The flats were open grounds; a portion of them had been cultivated. 
Such was Buffalo — ^and all of Buffalo — in 1798." 

Asa Ransom left the little settlement in 1799, and went to live at what 
is now Clarence Hollow, where he became a prominent citizen, being four 
times sheriff of Niagara county. He died in 1837, aged 70 years. Mrs. 
Catharine Stevens and Mrs. Mary R. Turney, daughters of Asa Ransom, 
are now living in Buffalo. In the year 1797, or 1798, Sylvanus May bee 
came to the embryo city, and established himself as an Indian trader, 
probably in a log building on the west side of Main street, about twenty 
rods north of Exchange street. In 1804, he bought inner lot 35.* May- 
bee came from Canada, and originally from the Mohawk valley. In 1807, 

♦ Thetcnns ** inner" and "outer" lots were applied in the original survey of the village, to 
designate their location with respect to the village boundaries. These terms, and the numbers given 
he ots, w ill be used hereafter in this work, and will be understood by reference to the maps herein. 

20 History of Buffalo. 

he, being then a Major of Militia, challenged his superior officer, Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Ransom, to fight a duel. For this he was cashiered, and 
not long afterwards removed to Cattaraugus Creek, and his lot passed 
into the hands of James McMahan. 

During the years 1797 and 1798, Joseph EUicott, with a small army of 
assistants, was engaged in surveying the Holland Land Company's tract, 
as detailed in the preceding volume. He was a brother of Andrew A. 
Ellicott, the first Surveyor-General of the United States. When Joseph 
Ellicott reached the locality where now stands the proud city of BuflFalo, 
it is clear that he saw with almost prophetic vision, the future importance 
of the spot, and realized its numerous advantages as the site for a great 
commercial city. To the day of his death, he never relinquished the 
faith that was undoubtedly bom within him at that time ; he certainly 
had little cause to do so. During the surveying campaign of 1798, EUi- 
cott made his headquarters at Buffalo Creek. The surveys were pushed 
forward through the year 1799, and the belief that there would sometime 
be a great city on his favorite location, grew stronger and stronger in 
EUicott's mind. 

William Robbins established himself as a blacksmith in Buffalo, 
probably, as early as 1798. He appears as the purchaser of a lot in 
" New Amsterdam,*' in 1804. ^^ ^^^ ^ shop on the west side of Main 
street, in 1806. 

In a letter from the late William Peacock to Mr. William Ketchum, 
he refers to his horseback ride through Buffalo in 1794, asfoUows : — 

" In passing along the Indian path (now Main street) to the Terrace, 
the land was covered with a very thick underbrush, small timber and 
some large old oak trees * * * There was a little cleared spot on 
the Terrace bank on which is now erected the Western Hotel.* That 
little spot was covered with a green sward on which the Indians on a 
fine day would lie and look off from the high Terrace upon Lake Erie ; 
and I must say that to me it was one of the most beautiful views I ever 

1)ut my eyes upon. Coming out of the woods it burst on my vision — the 
arge ana beautiful sheet of pure water, Lake Erie. * * * It made 
an impression on me that will always remain, with most devout and 
religious remembrance." 

In 1801, Joseph R. Palmer, a younger brother of John Palmer, the 
inn-keeper, resided with the latter. At this time he wrote the following, 
letter, which is self-explanatory : — 

Buffalo, nth Aug., i8oi, 
" Sir — The inhabitants of this place wonld take it as a particular 
favor if you would grant them the liberty of raising a school house on 
a lot in any part of the town, as the New York Missionary Society have 
been so good as to furnish them with a school master clear of any 
expense, except boarding and finding him a school house — if you will be 

* The Western Hotel stood on what was once rather low ground ; there was once qaite a consid- 
erable and abrupt slope, from about the center of the Terrace, down to the line of the front of the 
hotel. What used to appear as quite a hill, has been leveled, as far to the northwest as Eagle Street. 

Derivation of the Name Buffalo. 21 

so good as to grant them this favor, which they will take as a particular 
mark of esteem. By request of the inhabitants. 

Jos. R. PALME*, 

Jos. Ellicott, Esq, 

" N. B.— Your answer t6 this would be very acceptable, as they have 
the timber ready to hew out" * 

That this very reasonable request was promptly granted is shown by 
the following entry which appears m Ellicott's diary under date erf 
August 14, 1801 : — 

"Went to Buffalo, alias New Amsterdam, to lay off a lot for a 
school house, the inhabitants offering to erect one at tfaieir own expense." 

The school house was built on Peasi street near No. 104, but it was 
not finished till J809. 

When Joseph Palmer wrote the above quoted letter to ElHcott, he 
dated it ^* Buffalo," instead of New Amsterdam, the name that Ellicott's 
principab gave the settlement, and be did so in spite of the fact that he 
was soliciting a favor. This indicates quite clearly that the settlers even 
aseariy as that, preferred the name, ''Buffalo,'* and that " Buffalo "^ it 
was to be. This brings . us to tke vexed question of the origin ol the 
name — a que^on that has commanded the attention and investigation 
of some of the ablest minds in the county, and yet is unsettled. As far 
as the city itself is concerned, the matter may be dismissed by the simple 
statement that it received its name from the adjacent creek : but who 
named the stream and why it was called after the monarch of the 
prairies, seem, unfortunately, to be questions that must go back into the 
past without satisfactory or conclusive answers. The principal argu- 
ments of the ablest writers on the subject, in favor of the different 
theories that have been advanced, have already received proper attention 
in the preceding volume, and hence need not be further referred to. It 
will suffice to state that from about the beginning of the century the 
little village in the wilderness gradually became more and n!iore widely 
known as Buffalo, and in a few years "New Amsterdam," and "Lake 
Erie," as applied to the village, were heard no more.i; 

Down to about the date under consideration (1801), the principal 
and almost the only source of supplies for the settlers on Buffalo creek, 

^ Joficph Richard Palmer, it is said, U«ght school for the garrison chikbea at Fort Erie, before 
he located at Buffalo. Hedied in Buffalo in ^813. 

f While this woik was going tnrough the press, the editor rcoeiTcd a letter signed *' An Old 
Settler,'* the substance of which is, that Buffalo received its name from the Creek, which stream 
was named ** Tusawa," or Buffalo, from the fact that droves of that animal once came to the month 
of the Creek to drink. '* Old Settler," says, " I had a cousin who traveled on honeback through 
Buffalo and other places, following the lakes, when there was nothing but a foot-path and no in- 
habitants but the Indians. I have heard him tell of seeing the Buffalo herds and just where their 
haxd-beaten path lay; but that I have lost track of." This is given merely as another contribution 
vpOD the vexed question, and may or may not be of value. 

22 History of Buffalo. 

was Fort Erie. The western shore of the river from Liake Erie to Lake 
Ontario was largely cleared, settled and cultivated, while on this side 
the forest was almost unbroken. In going to Fort Erie for supplies the 
settlers at Buffalo usually passed directly from the mouth of Buffalo 
Creek across to the Fort. 

From the eastward an Indian trail came in to Buffalo creek nearly 
on the present line of Main street A branch diverged not farabovethe 
present junction of North street, passed near the site of the Catholic 
church, on York street, and over or very near the site of the re8ervair» 
and thence down to the river. In the spring of 1798, the main trail was 
improved and made a tolerable wagon road, under direction of Joseph 
EUicott. Then, or a little later, a road was cut out so as to be passable 
for trains near the line of the branch trail just mentioned, and a dugway 
was made near where the street railroad buildings are located, on 
Niagara street. This was known as the Guide-Board road, from the 
guide-board on Main street, pointing the way to the ferry. In gmngfrom 
the ferry to the Buffalo settlement, the travel was at that time mostly 
under the bluff of the lake shore, and then along the hard, sandy beach 
of the lake, to the Terrace. Alter Niagara street was surveyed and cut 
out, it was for a long time almost impassable, or account of the swampy 
character of the ground ; its course was also crossed by numerous small 
brooks having steep banks ; it was afterwards improved by making it a 
corduroy road. Another trail, diverging from the main road at what 
was then called Four-Mile creek, (the Scajaquada,) followed nearly the 
line of Bouck avenue, to the river. 

Dr. Cyrenius Chapin, a man who was destined to wield a great deal of 
influence upon the early history of Buffalo, came from Oneida county, 
in 1801, on a prospecting tour. He was evidently well pleased with 
what he saw, for after his return home, he wrote Mr. Bllicott that be and 
a few erf his friends purposed to purchase a whole township at the mouth 
of Buffialo creek. He added : — 

''Forty respectable citizens that are men of good property, have 
signed articles of agreement to take a township* it it can be purchased^ 
and will pay the ten per cent when we receive the article.** 

Joseph ElKcott entertained brighter anticipations for that locality ; the 
land was not yet surveyed, and Dr. Chapin's proposition was rejected. 
It is supposed that Zerah Phelps and John Crow, were parties to this 
proposed agreement. Crow came to Buffalo, from Oneida county, in 
1 801, or 1802. He occupied a house on inner lot number i, near the 
corner of Washington and Crow, (now Exchange streets.) The original 
house was of logs, to which Crow built a frame addition. He was an 
inn-keeper, and remained in Buffalo until 1806; he died in 1830, in 
Pennsylvania. Zerah Phelps left Buffalo not long after 1804, removing 
to near Batavia. 

The First Preacher. 23 

The jounial of Mr. Ellicott indicates that Henry Chapin was living 
in Buffalo, as early as 1801. The journal says, under date of January 5, 
of that year : — 

" * * In the evening, rode out with Mr. H. Chapin. He overscft, 
and I unfortunately fell with my side on a sharp stump, and much bruised 
and injured my ribs." 

This journal also notes what was doubtless the first church service 
in Buffalo. He says : — 

"* * This day, (January nth,) Rev. Elkanah Holmes, an ana- 
baptist preacher and missionary among the Indians, preached for the 
inhabitants of New Amsterdam. His sermons were well adapted to the 
situation and the capacity of the people he preached to. Appears to be 
a good man — worthy of the charge entrusted to him." 

Another missionary, named Palmer, is also mentioned by Mr. Ellicott^ 
in his journal. Palmer was sent out to the Indians about this time, by 
the Dutch Reformed church ; but Mr. Holmes is undoubtedly entitled 
to the distinction of being the first preacher in Buffalo. He labored 
among the Indians until 18 12. He was a Calvinistic Baptist. A son of 
Mr. Holmes married a daughter of Dr. Chapin. 

It was in January, t8oi, that Joseph Ellicott entered upon the duties 
of local agent for the Holland Land Company, in which capacity he 
visited Buffalo. He removed to Ransomville (Clarence Hollow,) on 
the 2ist of the same month. As an indication that the tide of emigration 
was already setting strongly westward, Mr. Ellicott recorded in his 
journal, on February 26th : — 

"Last night lodged at this house (Ransom's), upwards of forty 
people — men, women and children — moving principally to New Con- 
necticut and Presque Isle," (Erie.) 

In July, 1801, an event occurred in Buffalo, which for a time created 
intense excitement. John Palmer was sitting on a bench in front of his 
inn, with William Ward and another man ; it was in the evening. Sud- 
denly a young Seneca warrior, called by the whites *' Stiff-armed George," 
rushed up and made a desperate effort to stab Palmer, without any 
known provocation. The inn-keeper avoided the blow, upon which the 
enraged Indian turned upon Ward, and stabbed him in the neck. An 
alarm was raised, the whites hurried to the spot, and the Indian was 
finally secured, but not until he had fatally stabbed a man named John 
Hewitt. The culprit, as near as can be learned, was sent away at once 
to Fort Niagara, and placed in charge of Major Moses Porter, then in 
command there. The next day, a body of Indian warriors numbering 
fifty or sixty, appeared in the village, armed and painted, and threatened 
that if the culprit was executed, they would massacre all the whites. A 
pow-wow was then held over some blood that had flowed from a wound 
inflicted on " Stiff-armed George," and the bowlings and flourishings of 
weapons by the warriors, frightened the people beyond expression ; many 

24 History of Buffalo. 

left the settlement for safety. Benjamin Barton, Jr., was then Sheriff of 
the county. He soon arrived at the village, and proposed to take the 
assassin and remove him to the jail at Canandaigua. This course was 
fiercely opposed by the Indians, who argued that when the crime was 
committed, their brother was drunk, and, therefore, was excusable ; the 
whites insisted that the culprit was sober, when he did the deed, and that 
it made little difference whether he was or not. 

Finally, Sheriff Barton, accompanied by some of the Chiefs, went to 
Fort Niagara, and held a consultation with Major Porter. It was finally 
agreed that " Stiff-armed George " should be allowed to go at large, the 
Chiefs pledging themselves that he should be forthcoming on the day set 
for the trial, which pledge was fulfilled. The trial was held at the Can- 
andaigua Court of Oyer and Terminer, in the following February. Red 
Jacket addressed the jury with his accustomed power and eloquence, 
citing the numerous murders of Indians by the whites, which had been 
followed by no punishment, as grounds for acquitting the prisoner; but 
the Indian was convicted. He was, however, afterwards pardoned by 
the governor,* on condition of his leaving the State — undoubtedly an 
act of wisdom at that time. The above are the most reliable details to 
be obtained of an event that might easily have resulted in a bloody 
massacre. The killing of John Hewitt, was the first recorded murder in 
Buffalo. So strong was the influence of this event upon the minds of the 
whites, that a petition was immediately prepared and forwarded, asking 
for "a small garrison of troops at the village of Buffalo Creek, alias 
New Amsterdam." 

Down to May, 1802, Ellicott's anxiety as to the future growth 
and importance of the village and city which he had pictured in his 
mind upon his favorite site, must have increased somewhat, for in that 
month he wrote Paul Busti, the general agent of the Holland Company, 
as follows: — 

" While speaking on the subject of taking things in their proper time, 
I cannot refram from mentioning that the Company delaying in opening 
their lands for sale in New Amsterdam, and the lands adjoining thereto, 
I fear the nick of time will pass by, at least for making a town of New 

This expression was undoubtedly called out in part by Mr. Ellicott's 
forebodings of the rivalry of Black Rock, to which he referred in the 
same letter as " equally or more advantageous for a town than Buffalo." 
That was only eighty-one years ago — little more than a man's allotted 
lifetime — ^and an ordinance was then in force, offering a bounty of five 
dollars each for wolf scalps, " whelps half price," and half a dollar each 
for foxes and wildcats. 

*The origiiud pardon granted in this case by Governor Clinton, is now in the rooms of the Bu£falo 
Historical Society. 

Survey of Buffalo in 1803-04. 25 

Joseph Wells settled at Buffalo creek, in 1802, coming over from Can- 
ada. He had passed by Buffalo creek in 1800, on his way to Canada with 
his brother. His son, Aldrich Wells, was bom in August, 1802, and was 
the first white male child bom in Buffalo. Joseph Wells occupied a fifty- 
acre tract of land on the east side of Main street, just south of High 
street : there the venerable William Wells was bora, who is now the 
oldest native resident of Buffalo. Joseph Wells afterwards removed to 
Niagara street, where the First Congregational church now stands. He 
was engaged in brick-making, about 1819, where the Bennett elevator is 
now located. He raised and commanded a company of light infantry, 
which took part in the war of 1812. Chandler J. Wells, Esq., is another 
son of Joseph Wells.* 

In 1803, the village wa^ partially surveyed by William Peacock,t 
under the general direction of Ellicott, and was finished by Ellicott in 
person, in 1804. The streets were laid out substantially as they exist to- 
day, as far as they were then defined. In referring to this labor by Mr. 
Ellicott, the Rev. George W. Hosmer, D. D., said in his very interesting 
paper read before the Buffalo Historical Society, January 13, 1864: — 

" We should like another picture of him ^Ellicott), standing by his 
compass in what is now Main street, in front of tne churches ; so confident 
is he that commerce must come and pour out her horn of plenty, that he 
has resolved to lay out a city ; so delighted is he with the grandeur of 
the situation, that he thinks he will make his home here ; he selects for 
himself a noble manor, one hundred acres of land, between Eagle and 
Swan streets, and from Main nearly to Jefferson street — almost enough 
for a principality in Germany — ^and determines to build upon the western 
front, looking towards the lake. So here, upon what is to be the site of 
his house, he stands by his compass, indicating the lines which now are 
our streets. * * * jyji., Ellicott, in laying out our "city, had 
large ideas, and worked upon a magnificent scale.! He did not bring a 
map of New York, or Boston, or Albany, and lay it down here ; he 
wrought upon the inspiration of a magnificent hope, and we are greatly 
indebted to him for the op)en, handsome face of our city." 

In an early letter to Theophilus Cazenove, the first general agent of 
the Holland Company, Mr. Ellicott thus describes the spot he had 
selected for the future city : — 

" The building spot is situated about sixty perches from the lake, on a 
beautiful elevated bank, about twenty-five feet perpendicular height 
above the surface of the water in the lake, from the foot of which, with 
but little labor, may be made the most beautiful meadows, extending to 
the lake and up Buffalo creek to the Indian line. From the top of the 

*See biogisphic sketch of C. J. Wells, in sabseqaent pages. 

t William Peacock married a niece of Joseph Ellicott He was a man of prominence, and was 
conspicnoos in connection with Mr. Ellicott and others, in the explorations and surreys for the Erie 
canal. Mr. Pcacock*s later life was spent in Majville, Chantanqua connty, N. V. 

tFrom the fact that Joseph Ellicott assisted his brother Andrew in the survey of the city of 
Washington, it is supposed that he adopted the similar plan of radiating streets in Bu£Ealo, from the 
one used in the former dty. 

26 History of Buffalo. 

bank there are few more beautiful prospects. Here the eye wanders 
over the inland sea to the southwest, until the sight is lost in the horizon. 
On the northwest are seen the progressing settlements in Upper Canada, 
and southwesterly, with the pruning of some trees out of tne way, may 
be seen the Company's land for the distance of forty miles, gradually 
ascending, variegaterf with valleys and gentle rising^ hills, until the sight 
passes their summit, at the sources of the waters of the Mississippi."* 

The accompanying map of the village, as first surveyed, shows its 
boundaries and extent quite clearly. 

In naming the streets of Buffalo, Ellicott, or his superiors, honored 
the names of the Hollanders who formed the company owning the lands, 
and those of well-known Indian tribes. A reference to the map of 1804, 
will show that Main street as far up as Church, was called Willink ave- 
nue, while above Church street it was called Van Staphorst avenue. 
Niagara street was Schimmelpennick avenue ; Erie street was Vallen- 
hoven avenue ; Court street was Cazenove avenue ; Church street was 
Stadnitski avenue ; Genesee street was Busti avenue. Busti and Caze- 
nove were further honored by having the name of the former attached 
to the Terrace above Erie street, while below that street the latter's 
name was applied. In the use of Indian names, Ellicott street was called 
Oneida street ; Washington street was Onond^a ; Pearl street was 
Cayuga ; Franklin street was Tuscarora, and Niagara street was Missi- 
sauga. Delaware, Huron, Mokawk, Eagle, Swan and Seneca were given 
their present names, and Exchange street was called Crow, in honor of 
John Crow. North and South Division streets were not laid out on the 
original map, for reasons that will presently appear. The changes in 
street names, as noted, were made in the year i825-'26. 

When Ellicott laid out the streets of the village and reserved intact 
the hundred acre ''outer lot 104," he undoubtedly intended to build 
thereon a home for his declining years. As may be seen on the map of 
1804, he included in the boundaries of his lot a-semi-circular piece of 
ground on its front, around which he curved what is now Main street. 
This curve was directly in front of " the churches," and from it a grand 
and unobstructed view was obtained down Main street north and south, 
Niagara street. Church street and Erie street. If this curve in Main 
street was not a wise provision from a commercial point of view, it cer- 
tainly improved what would have made one of the most eligible and 
sagaciously planned sites in the country for a palatial residence. It is said 
that Mr. Ellicott had expressed his intention of bequeathing his grounds 
and their improvements to the city at his death, for a permanent museum 
and park. But he was destined to never build on his favorite site, 
although he went so far as to gather more or less materials for that pur- 
pose, some of which afterwards went into the construction of the first 

* Mr. Ellicott is reported to have said after he went to Batavia to live — " God has made Buffalo, 
and I mns^ try and make Batayia." 

Map of iht- 

Tlllage of Ifew AmsteFdam 

Made far the HtMand Land, Company 


JOSEPH aUCOrr, surveyor. 


28 History of Buffalo. 

jail— a less noble purpose than that for which they were intended. In 
the year 1809, the Highway Commissioners decided to straighten Main 
street, thus cutting off the semi-circular front of Mr. Ellicott's lot. This 
action Mr. EUicott held to be illegal, but he did not actively oppose it ; 
it has been claimed with some degree of authority, that the interference 
with his plans through this change in the street, led Mr. EUicott to aban- 
don his intention of making Buffalo his home, and to remain in Batavia. 

Joseph EUicott was born in Buck's county, Pa., on the first day of 
November, 1760. His early education was acquired in common schools, 
but was afterwards broadened and deepened by extensive reading and 
well-directed observation. In early life, while assisting his father on the 
farm and in the mills of the latter, he began the study of surveying, 
which he soon mastered ; he was then often called by his older brother 
to assist him in that profession. Joseph EUicott surveyed the disputed 
line between South Carolina and Georgia, during which task he was 
attacked by fever and for a time his life was despaired of. After being 
the chief surveyor of the Holland Purchase, he was for years the trusted 
local agent of the Holland Land Company, a position of great responsi- 
bility.* About the year 1824, his health became much impaired, his 
.mind was seriously affected, and he finally settled into hopeless hypochon- 
dria. By advice of his physicians, he entered the Bloomingdale asylum 
at New York, but his malady increased, and on the 19th of August, 1826, 
Joseph EUicott, the* founder f of the city of Buffalo, ended his life by his 
own hand. He was never married. 

In the year 1803, we find recorded the arrival in Buffalo of David 
Reese, blacksmith. He came in the employ of the government for the 
benefit of the Indians. He was the first blacksmith in Buffalo. In 1806, 
Mr. Reese bought outer lot 176, on Seneca street, and built a frame shop 
on the corner of Washington and Seneca streets. This little shop was 
one of the two wooden buildings left standing after the burning of Buffalo 
in 181 3. Mr. Reese's J dwelling was erected on the opposite corner of 

* He was also an active promoter of the Erie, canal, and was one of the first commissioaers 
appointed by the Legislature. 

f Mr. Ellicott's right to the title is disputed by some excellent authorities, who insist that, while 
he eridently saw idl uie possibilities of tne locality as a site for a large commercial dty, and sur- 
veyed it, yet the Company for which he was agent never contributed in any way, either to the found- 
ing or the after-growtn of Buffalo ; but it is certain that he personally selected the site of the dty, 
urged the Company to secure it, induced the Indians to leave it out of the reservation, and designed 
the plan of the future city. 

t David Reese had an unfortunate quarrel with a Seneca chief named '* Young Kin£,*' in 1815. 
A dispute arose between Reese and an Indian over work that the blacksmith was to do mr the latter, 
and Reese knocked the Indian down. At this juncture Young King rode up and took part in the 

Suarrel, condemning Reese for what he had done. In response to this, Keese threatened to serve 
le chief in the same manner. Young King then dismountea and struck the blacksmith with a dub, 
upon which Reese siezed a scythe and with it nearly severed one of the Indian's arms ; it was ampu- 
tated the next day. Soon after John Jemison, a half-breed son of the celebrated ''White Woman," 
a man of fierce passions, came on from the Genesee at the head of a party of Indians for the purpose 
of killing Reese. The blacksmith was, however, either secreted by his friends or hid himself away, 
and the master was finally settled by referring it to Jud^ Porter, Joshua Gillett and Jonas Williams, 
both parties signing an agreement to abide by the decision of these arbitrators. Reese probably paid 
the Indian a sum of money in settlement of the affair. 

Doctor Chapin— Erastus Granger. 29 

Seneca street, on a part of Johnston's lot. He carried on the business in 
the old shop until about 1823. 

Dr. Cyrenius Chapin, to whom we have before referred, returned to 
Buffalo from the East, and m^ide it his permanent residence in 1803. No 
house being then obtainable, Dr. Chapin went with his family to Fort 
Erie, where they remained nearly two years. In the meantime he pur- 
chased inner lot 40, on Swan street, where he built, and in 1805, installed 
his family. Dr. Chapin was a remarkable man, as the reader of the pre- 
ceding volume has learned, and his wonderful activity and energy, though 
sometimes erratic, perhaps, were for years instrumental in advancing the 
best interests of the place. Mr. William C. Bryant read a very interest- 
ing paper before the Buffalo Historical Society in April, 1877, upon 
Orlando Allen, in which he thus pleasantly refers to Dr. Chapin : — 

** Doctor Chapin was, in truth, the most considerable person in the 
village at this era. His gallant achievements and sacrifices in the second 
struggle for independence, when he had exchanged his perilous drugs for 
the still deadlier implements of war« are fresh in every memory ; and 
his brusQue but honest Ivays, practical benevolence and sturdy- character, 
won for nim a place in the hearts of the pioneers of this region. * * 
His professional services were sought throughout a vast region, lapping 
f^ over into the heart of Canada, and extending as far south as Erie. 
When it is remembered that these visits were accomplished on horseback, 
and that there were no macadam or plank roads in those days, the ardu- 
ous nature of the Doctor's professional duties will be easier compre* 

At the time of the British assault on Buffalo, and its destruction by 
fire. Dr. Chapin was taken prisoner and confined in Canada more than a 
year. He died in February, 1838, and was followed to the grave by a 
large concourse of his former friends and fellow citizens. Mrs. Thaddeus 
M. Weed is a daughter of Dr. Chapin. She was bom in 1803, and still 
resides in the city.* 

Erastus Granger was another important accession to Buffalo, in 
1803. Mr. Ketchum says, in his history of Buffalo and the Senecas: — 

" Previous to the election of Mr. Jefferson, the Grangers, then young 
men, had been engaged in the examination, and perhai)s survey of Vir- 

E'nia lands. ♦ « « During their sojoum in Virginia, they 
^came ac(^uainted with Mr. Jefferson, and on his becoming a candidate 
for the presidency, the Grangers warmly espoused his cause, and after 
his election, he offered to do anything in his pow^r for them. ♦ ♦ 

Mr. Erastus Granger was sent to Buffalo, to exert his political influence 
in favor of the party which had elevated Mr. Jefferson to power. 
* * Mr. Granger had been quite recently married, and his wife 
had died before he came to Buffalo. He located himself at John Crow's 
tavern, as a boarder, it being the only place where he could obtain even 

*" The precedence oTer the male sex of Mrs. Merrill, Mrs. Weed, and Mrs. Bart, in respect of 
birth and residence in oar city, was prophetic of the leading position of the women of Buffalo, in all 
good ways and works. Oar dimate has always been favorable to thelongerity, as well as the beanty 
of oar women."— j5. C Spragu^s StmuOnUmnal Addnu, 




J 00 







32 History of Buffalo. 

the scanty accommodations afforded him. He was appointed Super- 
intendent of Indian affairs, was the first postmaster, and, on the organiza- 
tion of the district of Buffalo Creek, he was appointed Collector of Cus- 
toms for that district. * * Mr. Granger became the leader of 
the Democratic party in Western New York." 

The first purchase of land by Mr. Granger, is recorded as inner lot 
31, corner of Pearl street and the Terrace, in July, 1805. He? afterwards 
took up a large tract of land now partly embraced in Forest Lawn Cem- 
etery and the park. Mr. Granger was first married March 21, 181 3, and 
married a second wife in the person of a daughter of Nathaniel Sanborn, 
of Canandaigua, an estimable and accomplished woman. Mr. Granger 
was afterwards honored with the office of Judge, and he filled the differ- 
ent positions of trust in which he was placed, with distinguished ability. 
He resided until his death at " Flint Hill," (Main street,) a little west of 
the stone house erected by his son, Warren Granger, now a citizen of 
Buffalo. Judge Granger died December 26, 1826. 

As we have said, the survey of the village was completed in 1804, and 
the lots placed in market for the first ; this action gave an impetus to the 
growth of the settlement. The following lots were sold during that year, 
being the first regular conveyances of land in the village plot : Nathan 
W. Sever, outer lots 55 and 56,sixty-three and one-half acres, $115; Zerah 
Phelps, June i, inner lot i, for $112; Sylvanus Maybee, August 6, inner 
lot 35, $135; Samuel McConnell, outer lot 84, May 19, $191.50. The 
preceding maps show the location of these lots. 

Following is a list of owners of land located in Buffalo, in 1804, as 
given in Turner's History of the Holland Purchase : " William Robbins, 
Henry Chapin, Sylvanus Maybee, Asa Ransom, Thomas Stewart, Samuel 
Pratt, William Johnston, John Crow, Joseph Landon, Erastus Granger, 
Jonas Williams, Erastus Keane, Vincent Grant, Louis Le Couteulx." 
These purchasers had not all yet become residents, several of them hav- 
ing improved their property under pre-emption arrangements. 

The reader will be interested in learning some of the prices that 
were paid for lots in Buffalo, in early days. In 1804 lot i, the site of the 
Mansion House, brought $140. In 1805, Thomas Sidwell paid $35 and 
$45 respectively for lots 75 and 76, on Pearl street. In 1806, David 
Mather paid for lot 38, on Main Street, $120.25 in advance. Soon after 
the close of the war of 1812, Smith H. Salisbury paid for lot 183, on 
Main street, $480.80, and agreed to erect a house twenty feet square. In 
1817, Frederick B. Merrill paid for lots 87 and 88, $580, and agreed to 
erect a house twenty by twenty-four. In 181 8, there were no sales, and 
but one in 1 819, of outer lot 1 15, at $20 per acre, and for parts of inner 
lots 87 and 88, (thirty-five feet,) $175. In 1821, Roswell Chapin paid for 
inner lot 133, $250. Gilman Folsom bought lot 198, for $150, agreeing to 
have a frame house built within one year. In the year 1822, under the 

Arrival of Samuel Pratt. 33 

more liberal policy of the new local agent, Mr. Otto, and the prospect of 
the canal soon being built, sales largely increased, and the entire remain- 
der of the original plat of New Amsterdam was sold. It is explained in 
Turner's History of the Holland Purchase, that Mr. Ellicott*s policy of 
insisting of settlers building on their lots, was more to secure actual set- 
tlements, than to increase the value of lots sold. 

Outer lot 93 was deeded to William Johnston, October 27, 1804. 
Ketchum's ** Buffalo and the Senecas," states it as probable that an 
arrangement was made with Johnston whereby he relinquished his 
claim to a part of the land on the flat bottom between the Big and Little 
BufiFalo creeks, west of Main street (see maps,) as only " outer lot 85 was 
conveyed to him in 1804, but inner lots 3, 30 and 32 were conveyed to 
him at the same time ; whereas outer lot 86, the remaining portion of the 
land in the triangle, was conveyed to Isaac Davis, June 29, 1814." 

Samuel Pratt, a man of commanding influence, became a resident of 
Buffalo in 1804. He had made a trip through this region in 1802, on a 
fur-buying expedition, when he became convinced of the future greatness 
of Buffalo. Mr. Pratt located himself upon inner lot No. i, on one 
corner of which the Mansion House now stands.* On the Holland 
Company's map this lot appears as inner lot 2, but on later maps it is 
designated as number i. He afterwards purchased several other lots. 
Mr. Pratt and his family made the long journey from his former home 
in New England in an old fashioned coach which he had had built for the 
purpose. This removal into the wilderness brought down upon him the 
ridicule of all his eastern friends ; but " Captain " Pratt was not of the 
material that is turned from a settled purpose by ridicule. 

One day in September of that year (1804,) the dwellers in Buffalo 
were astonished at beholding a coach, followed by one or two open 
wagons, loaded with furniture, coming jolting and swaying down 
Willink avenue (Main street) dodging the stumps and other obstacles as 
best they might. This coach was the first carriage that was ever seen in 
Erie county, and it contained, with the other wagons, the family and 
outfit of Mr. Pratt. No other event, perhaps, that had yet occurred in 
the little village caused more surprise of an agreeable character than 
the arrival of this unpretentious retinue. The vehicles stopped in front 
of John Crow's tavern, where the inmates were met by Erastus Granger, 
who greeted them warmly and generously placed at their disposal his 

^ As an indication of the interest displayed by Mr. Pratt in the a()vancement of his adopted 
home, we quote the following letter, written but a few months after his arrival at Buffalo : — 

New Amsterdam, December 2, 1804. 

Sir : — Mr. Spice r has requested me to write to you, to inform you that he wishes to purchase 
Lot No. 15, in the back street. This Mr. Spicer is a carpenter by trade. He has been in my 
empW and has behaved himself like a very sober man. His work is much wanted here, and I 
should be very glad to have him accommodated. Your advance money will be paid when you give 
him a ** refusar' of the lot. 

With sentiments of esteem, I remain your friend, SAMUEL PRATT. 

Joseph Ellicott, Esq. 

34 History of Buffalo. 

own room in the tavern. While Mr. Pratt was expressing his warmest 
thanks for Mr. Granger's generosity, Mrs. Pratt inspected the apartment 
which was for a time to be her home. It may be conceived that her 
heart failed when she saw a room perhaps twelve feet square, the walls 
of rough logs and the floor of split logs, with a bed.stead made of poles 
in one corner. It is little wonder that one of the Pratt children, as it is 
related, could not refrain from laughter over the enthusiastic expressions 
of gratitude made by her father for Mr. Granger's kindness in giving up 
this primitive parlor, and the no less earnest declarations of the latter 
that he felt honored in thus giving up his room. 

Soon after Mr. Pratt's arrival he built a frame house, the first one of 
considerable size in the place, and a store in which he began trading with 
the settlers and Indians. He also built a large bam on the comer of 
Seneca and EUicott streets. The frame, it is said, was made of green 
timber and consequently stood through the fire of i8i 3, the rest of the 
structure being destroyed, and was afterwards covered and used as a 
stable for the Franklin House. Mr. Pratt had a large family of children, 
the youngest of whom, Mrs. Orlando Allen, still lives in Buffalo. One 
of his sons, Hon. Hiram Pratt, was twice elected Mayor of Buffalo, and 
was extensively engaged in commercial enterprises. . Captain Pratt is 
remembered as a man of great energy and business activity, and one who 
displayed commendable public spirit in whatever related to the improve- 
ment of the village. His store was for years the principal rendezvous of 
the Indians and where they did a large share of their trading. Capt. 
Pratt enjoyed the Indian title of " Negurriyu," or*' honest dealer;" or, as 
Mr. Letchworth's history of the Pratt family gives the name, " Hodani- 
doah," or " merciful man."* 

An incident is related of Captain Pratt's intercourse with the Indians 
that reflects still less credit upon the latter and came very near resulting 
in a serious trouble. It occurred while Captain Pratt was building his 
house ; Mrs. Pratt had put some meat boiling out of doors, when an Indian 
named or known as " Peter Gimlet," probably overcome by the appe- 
tizing smell, suddenly snatched the largest piece of meat from the pot 
and started for the reservation. Little Esther Pratt saw the theft, ran to 
the store and told her father that " Peter Gimlet " had stolen their meat. 
Captain Pratt sent his son Asa after the thief, and he was soon brought 
back. When Peter's blanket was opened and the meat discovered, the 
Captain took his horsewhip and laid it vigorously about the Indian's legs. 

* Some of the Indians in those days exhibited capacity for sharp business practice that would 
seem more adapted to these later times. All furs were then bought by weight and the Indians some- 
times brought in beaver skins with the claws filled with lead. In order to not make his discovery of 
this species of fraud in a public way, which would have mortally offended the delinquent, Capt. 
Pratt would cut off the loaded claws with a hatchet, with a remark that he would allow for them in 
the weight. If the Indian demurred to this, Mr. Pratt would offer to weigh the daws separately ; 
as this would certainly result in exposure, the tricky customer would have to submit to Capt. Pratt's 
method of weighing the furs. 

.S^Sr ^^^ 

Captain Pratt and the Indians. 35 

Peter endured the punishment for a moment and then bounded away 
toward his home, yelling with pain. 

Not long after, a large number of Indians began to arrive in front of 
Captain Pratt's store, where they seated themselves on the ground in their 
customary attitude. Then followed squaws, then chiefs and more Indians 
of all . stations who squatted down in front of the store in a circle. By 
two o'clock in the afternoon two or three hundred Indians had arrived. 
At this juncture Captain Pratt was sent for and the proceedings began. 
" Farmer's Brother," the noted Chief, addressed Captain Pratt and nar- 
rated the story as told by " Peter Gimlet," to the effect that he had been 
ignominiously whipped without cause, and closed by demanding redress. 
Captain Pratt then gave a statement of the case as it had actually occurred 
and called his little daughter to corroborate him. 

After an impressive consultation by the Chiefs, Farmer's Brother 
arose with all his native dignity and delivered the judgment, which was 
in substance that Peter Gimlet (giving him his Indian name) had stolen 
Negurriyu's meat and Negurriyu had inflicted only deserved punish- 
ment, and if he desired, Negurriyu might whip him again. The offender 
was also banished from the reservation and was not seen there for two 
or three years. Captain Pratt then rolled out a barrel of salt from which 
the Indians helped themselves until it was all gone. This proceeding 
undoubtedly had its effect on the jury ! 

On another occasion Esther Pratt* had carried her infant sister into 
the store where she seated her on the counter. A. Seneca squaw sud- 
denly entered the store, caught up the child and fled away towards the 
forest. She was soon caught and the child rescued. The squaw gave 
as her motive for the act, that she had lately lost her own child and 
wanted another to take its place. 

A still more startling incident occurred in the Pratt family at another 
time. The family were at the dinner table, when one of the boys, 
Benjamin, rushed into the house, closely pursued by an Indian warrior 
who was generally known as " The Devil's Ramrod ;" the Indian was 
brandishing his knife and threatening to kill the boy. After the Indian 
had been with some difficulty appeased, it was learned that the boy had 
been annoying him until he had become enraged. The Indian Anally 
thrust his knife savagely into the door-post and strode away exclaiming, 
" Me no kill Hodanidoah's boy." 

In Buffalo business circles the name of Pratt has always been con- 
spicuous, and descendants of Captain Pratt are now prominently con- 
nected with the manufactures and trade of the city. Captain Pratt died 
August 31, i8i2.t 

* EsUier Pratt, the yoang participant in these incidents, became the wife of Mr. Augustus C 
Fox, and lived most of her life in Buffalo. She died in Springfield, HI., in 1882. 

^ See biographical sketches of P. P. Pratt and Samuel F. Pratt, in subsequent pages. 

36 History of Buffalo. 

William Hodge came to Buffalo in 1804, having the year previous 
taken up the farm lot that embraced within its boundaries the premises 
now occupied by his son, the venerable William Hodge, on Hodge 
avenue ; the latter was six months old when his father came to Buffalo. 
William Hodge came from Otsego county and early engaged in the 
planting of a nursery, which business has been perpetuated by his $on, 
down to the present time. In 181 1, Mr. Hodge built a large brick hotel 
on what is now the corner of Main and Utica streets. This was the first 
brick building in the county and became widely known as " The Brick 
Tavern on the Hill." It was the last building destroyed when the village 
was burned two years later. After Buffalo was burned, Mr. Hodge was 
one of the first to return' to the desolate ruins, and he did not wait a 
single day before beginning the reconstruction of his home. There was 
something of a strife between Mr. Hodge and Ralph M. Pomeroy as to 
who should succeed in getting a building up first ; Mr. Pomeroy was a 
day or two ahead of his neighbor in the undertaking. 

Louis Stephen Le Couteulx de Caumont, a French gentleman oi 
excellent family, arrived in Buffalo in 1804 and became one of her most 
prominent citizens. He built a frame house on Crow (Exchange) street, 
opposite Crow's tavern, on the site of what was afterwards known as the 
" Le Couteulx Block ;" in a part of this building he established the first 
drug store in the county. He was soon after appointed local agent for 
the sale of Buffalo lands, by the Holland Land Company. He is repre- 
sented as having been a "gentle, genial spirit — a gentleman of the old 
school — ^and a Frenchman in his manners and address." He was the 
founder of the St, Louis Catholic church, the lot for which was donated 
by him. Mr. Le Couteulx died October 16, 1839, at the age of eighty- 
four, regretted by all who were capable of appreciating his good qualities. 
As a private citizen no one was more worthy of the general esteem and 
consideration in which he was held. * * In the discharge of 
his public duties he was distinguished for his integrity, his zeal and 
his affability. 

Zerah Phelps has been mentioned as the purchaser of inner lot No. 
I, (just east of the Mansion House,) in June, 1804. As an evidence that 
the Holland Land Company appreciated the fact that the immediate im- 
provement of the lots sold by them was the surest road to other sales, it is 
said that Mr. Phelps was compelled to agree that he would " build a house 
twenty-four feet square and clear off half an acre of land." Similar agree- 
ments are said to have been entered into by other purchasers. As has 
been shown, however, the prices of lots were not exhorbitant. 

The year 1804 ^vas made further notable by the establishment of a 
post route from Buffalo. A law was passed in the spring establishing a 
route from Canandaigua to Fort Niagara, by way of Buffalo creek. This 
route was put in operation the following September, with Erastus Gran- 

Visit of Rev. Timothy Dwight. 37 

gcr as postmaster. " Once a week a solitary horseman came from Can- 
andaigua with a pair of saddlebags containing a few letters and a few 
diminutive newspapers scarcely larger than the letters, and once a week 
he returned to Fort Niagara with a still smaller literary freight.'** The 
first mail carrier was Ezra Metcalf. 

The Rev. Timothy Dwight, a former president of Yale College, 
visited Buffalo in 1804, and remarked thus of its general appearance 
at that time: — 

" Buffalo Creek, otherwise New Amsterdam, is built on the north- 
east border of a considerable mill stream which bears the same name. 

* * The southwestern bank is here a peninsula, covered with 
a handsome grove. Through it several vistas might be cut with 
advantage, as they would open fine views of the lake — a beautiful object. 

* * The village is built half a mile from the mouth of the creek, 
and consists of about twenty indifferent houses. * * The streets are 
straight and cross each other at right-angles, but are only forty feet wide. 
What could have induced this wretched limitation, in a mere wilderness, 
I am unable to conceive. The spot is unhealthy, though of sufficient 
elevation and, so far as I have been informed, free from the vicinity of 
stagnant waters. * * The inhabitants are a casual collection of 
adventurers, and have the usual character of such adventurers thus col- 
lected, when remote from regular society, retaining but little sense of 
government or religion. * * We saw about as many Indians in 
the village as white people. The prospect presented at Buffalo is most 
attractive. Directly opposite, at the distance of two miles, but in full 
view, stands Fort trie, a block-house, accompanied by a suit of barracks 
and a hamlet. This collection of houses is built on a beautiful shore, 
wears less the appearance of a recent settlement, and exhibits a much 
greater degree of improvement than anything which we saw west of 
Genesee river. Beyond this hamlet, a handsome point stretches to the 
southwest and furnishes an imperfect shelter for the vessels employed in 
the commerce of the lake. Seven of these vessels (five schooners, a sloop 
and a pettiaugre) lay in the harbor at this time, and presented to us an 
image of business and activity, which, distant as we were from the ocean, 
was scarcely less impressive than that presented by the harbor of New 
York, when crowded with almost as many hundreds. Behind this point 
another much more remote stretches out in the same direction, exhibiting 
a form of finished elegance, and seeming an exactly suitable limit for the 
sheet of water which fills the fine scope between these arms. Still further 
southward the lake opens in boundless view and presents in a perfect man- 
ner the blending of unlimited waters with the sky. Over these points, 
assembled as if to feast our eyes at the commencement of the even- 
ing after our arrival, was one of the most beautiful collections of clouds 
ever seen by the votary of nature. They were of elegant form and of 
hues intense and refulgent. The richest crimson fading into the tinges 
of pink and the rose, adorned them on the one side, and gold burnished 
into the brightest brilliancy on the other. * * Towards the 
southwest and the northeast, two long ranges of leaden colored clouds, 
with fleeces of mist hanging beneath them, reached round two-thirds of 
the horizon. * * The sky above of that pure, bright aspect 

* Johnson's History of Erie County. 

38 History of Buffalo. 

which succeeds a storm, when it becomes clear with a soft serenity, was 
varied from a glowins^ yellow, a brilliant straw color and a willow green 
into a light and finally into a dark azure, the beautiful blue of autumn. 
Beneath all this glory, the lake, a boundless field of polished glass, glit- 
tered alternately with the variegated splendor of the clouds and hues of 
the sky, softenmg the brilliancy of DOth with inimitable delicacy, and 
leaving on the mind the impression of enchantment rather than Reality. 
* ^ A lively imagination would easily have fancied that a paradise 
might be found beyond this charming expanse." 

If the Rev. Mr. Dwight erred in his estimate of the width of the 
streets laid out by Joseph EUicott, he certainly viewed the scene with 
the eye and appreciation of an artist, and many residents of Buffalo 
in these many years later will sympathize with his ardent description 
of its natural beauties. Mr. William Hall, then of Cleveland, O., who 
visited Buffalo in 1804, wrote of the place, in 1863, in a more practical 
vein, as follows: — 

** At Buffalo there were perhaps twenty houses, of which only three 
or four were frame, one of wnich was occupied by a Mr. Pratt, who kept 
a small store. He had his aged parents with him, whom I saw. Some 
streets were partially laid out, but the whole were full of stumps, and 
no fences. We rode up the creek some mile or two and crossed to 
see a Mr. Leech, who was from Connecticut * * Leaving 

Buffalo, we went to Black Rock through woods — a small pathway 
trodden mostly by Indians, with some appearance of wagons having 
passed that way. * 

The first baker in Buffalo, was John Despar, a Frenchman, who 
established his business on Johnston's lot, a little north of Reese's dwell- 
ing house, on Washington street, between Seneca and Exchange streets. 
In 1807, Despar purchased outer lot 31. He continued his business until 
after the war of 181 2. In 1820, he removed to a lot on what is now High 
street, where he soon after died.f 

As far as may be judged by recorded events, the year 1805 opened 
auspiciously for the village of Buffalo. The town of Erie, which included 
the village, had been erected by the legislature the preceding year, and the 
first town-meeting was held that .year at Crow's tavern, but the record was 
burned in 181 3, with nearly all other similar ones. A little memorandum 
book, inscribed, " Erie Town Book," now in possession of the Buffalo 
Historical Society, shows that Joshua Gillett was granted a license to sell 
liquor in the village, and one was also granted to " The Contractors, by 
S. Tupper." Others were probably granted, as we may presume that 
landlord Crow had one. The price of the licenses was five dollars each. 

"The Contractors Store," which was opened in 1804, or spring of 
1805, became quite a noted establishment. It was conducted by the men 

* This was probably on or near the line of Niagara street. 

t It is said that Despar sold his land to William Smith, who first supplied milk to the yillage. 
Smith was to pay Despar $200 annually as long as the latter and his wife lived ; they were both dead 
before the second payment became due. 

Vincent Grant— Judge Zenas Barker. 39 

who had contracts for supplying the military posts of the west. Samuel 
Tupper, whose name is mentioned above as taking out the license, first 
had charge of this store. He came to Buffalo probably as early as 1804, 
and botight inner lot 7, in 1805, and took up outer lot 17, in 1808, where 
he built a house on the corner of Tupper and Main streets. He was 
appointed an Associate Judge of the Common Pleas in the fall of 1805, 
and was the first person in Erie county who had a right to that title. 
Judge Tupper died in December, 1817, without children. An adopted 
daughter of his atterwards married Manly Colton, and they occupied the 
old homestead for many years. 

Vincent Grant, as we have already recorded, bought a lot in Buffalo 
in 1804, but he probably did not settle upon it until 1805. He was atone 
time in charge of the contractors store. He purchased inner lot No. 8, 
in 1808, on which he built a store. After the war he put up a cheap 
building on the southeast corner of Main and Seneca streets, where he 
traded until 1820, or later. He died not long after that date. 

Judge Zenas Barker settled in Buffalo, as early as 1804 or 1805, and 
began keeping tavern on the Terrace very soon after, near where John 
Palmer had been located in the same business. At the fall term (1805,) 
of the Court of Common Pleas, Mr. Barker and John Crow were licensed 
to run ferries across Buffalo creek, the former at the mouth of the stream, 
and the latter at what was known as Pratt's ferry. Mr. Barker's dwell- 
ing was on the comer of the Terrace and Main street. Judge Barker 
married Margaret Sydnor, May 10, 1814, reared a large family of children, 
(among whom was Jacob A. Barker, who became one of the leading 
business men of Buffalo,) was county clerk for some years, and was 
prominently connected with the commerce of the lakes. He died June 
2, 1859. A grand-daughter of Judge Barker became the wife of the late 
O. G. Steele. 

In the year 1806, Joseph Landon bought John Crow's tavern, riefitted 
and made a more commodious hotel of it, thus founding the Mansion 
House. Landon's tavern acquired a high reputation for its general 
hospitality and good cheer. In July, 1807, Mr. Landon purchased outer 
lot 81. He married first Mrs. Marvin, the mother of Ebenezer Walden, 
mentioned hereafter ; afterwards he married Mrs. West, widow of Dr. 
West, who was for a long time stationed at Fort Niagara. Mr. Landon 
finally removed to Lockport. 

In September, 1806, Ebenezer Walden brought the following letter 
of introduction to Erastus Granger : — 

" Batavia, Sept. 23, 1806. 

" Dear 5/r— Permit me to recommend to your particular attention the 

bearer of this — ^ayoune gentleman with whom I have long been acquainted 

— a correct scholar, liberally educated, an attorney in the Supreme 

Court, and a gentleman who will be quite an accession to your society 

4 . 

40 History of Buffalo. 

at Buffalo Creek. He is a stranger in your country ; any attentions 
paid to him will be a favor done to your friend and humble servant, 

D. B. BuowN. 

" Erastus Granger, Esq., Buffalo." 

The bearer of this letter was the first lawyer in Erie county. Mr. 
Walden immediately entered upon the practice of his profession in the 
little village, in a small office on Willink avenue, (Main street), between 
Seneca and Crow (Exchange) streets. In 1810, Mr. Walden purchased 
inner lots 12 and 13 and afterwards other lots. He married in the 
year 181 2, and was appointed "First Judge" of the Common Pleas in 
1823 ; he was mayor of the city one term (1838) and died in 1857.* 

David Mather established the third blacksmith shop in the village 
in 1806. Mr. Mather gives the following description of Buffalo as it 
appeared to him in that year : — 

"I settled in Buffalo in 1806. There were then sixteen dwelling 
houses, principally frame ones ; eight of them were scattered along on 
Main street, three of them were on the Terrace, three of them on Seneca 
street, and two of them on Cayuga street. There were two stores — one 
the * Contractors * on the corner of Main and Seneca streets, kept by 
Vincent Grant, on the east side of Main street The other was the 
store of Samuel Pratt, adjoining Crow's tavern. Mr. LeCouteulx kept a 
dru^ store in part of his house on (the north side of) Crow street. 
David Reese's Indian blacksmith shop was on Seneca street, and William 
Robbins had a blacksmith shop on Main street. John Crow kept a 
tavern where the Mansion House now stands, and Judge Barker kept 
one on the site of the market. I remember very well the arrival of the 
first mail that ever reached Buffalo. It was brought on horseback 
by Ezra Metcalf. He came to my blacksmith shop to get his horse 
shod. He told me he could carry the contents of his (mail) bag in his 
two hands." 

Elijah Leech, took up his residence in Buffalo in 1806. He was 
employed for a time in the store of Captain. Pratt, whose daughter he 
married. Afterwards he joined his brother-in-law, Samuel Pratt, Jr., in 
mercantile business. He purchased inner lot 46 in 1807, and after- 
wards outer lots 47, 48, 49 and 50. He built a house on the south side 
of Buffalo creek and lived there many years. Mr. Leech held several 
town and county offices and was one of the founders of the Washington 
street Baptist Church. He finally removed to Clarence Hollow and 
died there. 

Among those who settled in 1806 within the present city limits (then 
far outside of the village boundaries,) we find the names of Major Noble, 

* Judge Walden was greatly respected and honored through a long and active life. Perhaps it 
is not too much to say that no man stood higher in the public estimation, during the whole period 
of his residence in the city of Buffalo. * * * He has left a recoil that should satisfy 
the ambition of any man— that of a gentleman of learning and intelligence, a man of p^ect honor 
and integrity, a true friend fulfilling all the relations of life with fidelity, ever exerting a oooserva^ 
tive influence in favor of law, religion and morality. — KeUKmtCs Buffalo and the Situcas. 

Buffalo Made the County Seat. 41 

James Stewart, Gideon Moshier, Loren and Velorous Hodge and Henry 
Ketchum. Doubtless there were others. 

Amos Callender arrived at Buffalo in 1807 or '08, and afterwards 
became prominent in church and school affairs, laboring earnestly for 
the improvement of the morals of the new settlement. He kept books 
for different merchants for a time and taught school winters, some of the 
time in his own chambers. He subsequently became deputy postmaster 
and was appointed surrogate of the county in 18 13. He died in 1859.* 

The selection of " Buffalo, or New Amsterdam," as the county seat, 
in March, 1808, provided the Holland Land Company would erect a suit- 
able court-house and jail and give a half-acre of land on which the build- 
ings should stand, g^ve an impetus to immigration. The Company 
agreed to the proposition embodied in the act, and began the erection of 
a frame court-house on Washington street, directly in front of what is 
now known as the old court-house, which has been occupied by the 
Young Men's Christian Association. The building was finished in i8io.t 
A stone jail was built a little south of the court-house, on inner lots 184, 
185. This structure withstood the effects of the flames when the village 
was burned, and after the war was repaired and used again as the county 
jail. It was originally surrounded on three sides by a stockade of logs 
set on end and sharpened at the top. This jail was demolished about 
1834. The character of the work on these two buildings may be inferred 
from the fact that it was only a year from the time when they were 
accepted by the authorities, when the Board of Supervisors voted to 
raise $500 by tax, for the purpose of repairing them.J 

The year 1808 was a favorable one to the growth of Buffalo, and 
more lots were sold than in any previous year. Following is a list of the 
sales with the names of their purchasers : — 

Jabez Goodell, outer lots 136 and 145; Elisha Ensign, inner lot 60 
and farm lot 19 ; Joseph Wells, inner lot 62 ; Asa Fox, inner lot 61.; Gil- 
man Folsom, inner lot 72; David Mather, outer lot 123 ; William Hull 

* Deacon Callender was thrice married and had sU daughters. « • • j^ ^g^^^y ^^ 

tmly said that Deacon Callender led an active andnsefal life. Few men have the opportunity of 
doing so much good by active labor, by precept and by example. His memory will be cherished 
with esteem and gratitude. « « « -^KeUkunCs Buffalo and the Semcas, 

f An act to divide the county of Genesee into several counties and for other purposes, passed 
March il, 1808 :— 

Skction III. And be it further enacted, That the court-house and jail, in and for the said 
coanty of Niagara, be erected in the village of Buffalo or New Amsterdam, in the said county : pro- 
vided the Holland Land Company, their agent or agents shall, within three years from the passage 
of this act, and at their sole expense, erect in the said village a sufficient and suitable building or 
buildings for a court-house and ^ol for the said countv, and shall legally convey not less than half an 
acre of land whereon the same wall be erected, together with the said building or buildings, for the 
use of said county. 

\ Mrs. Charlotte S. Stevens, now of Williamsville, says that her father, Oziel Smith, came to 
Buffalo in 1807. He was a carpenter, and worked on the first court-house and jaiL He bought the 
lots on which the Tifft House now stands, but removed to Williamsville just before Buffalo was 
burned ; he died in 1836. 

42 History of Buffalo. 

and others, inner lot 8 ; Rowland Cotton, farm lot 75. Of these settlers, 
nearly or quite all located in or near Buffalo, and participated more or 
less in its growth. Gilman Folsom was the first regular butcher in the 
village. Jabez Goodell became a large purchaser of Buffalo real estate, 
and kept a tavern at a very early date on the comer ol Main and Goodell 
streets. He was conspicuous in the First Presbyterian church society 
at an early period in its h*istory, and when he died, left the larger portion 
of his valuable estate to different societies connected with that denomi- 
nation. He died September 27, 185 1, aged seventy-five years. 

Henry Ketchum and his brother Zebulon were early settlers in Buf- 
falo ; the former purchased outer lot 17 and farm lot 70, in the year 1807, 
and built his dwelling on the corner of Main and Chippewa streets. When 
this was swept away in 181 3, he fled with his family and never returned 
here to reside. Zebulon Ketchum spent his life in Buffalo, and de- 
scendants of his now reside here. Both of these men were brothers of 
Jesse Ketchum, once very prominent in educational matters. He came 
to Buffalo in 1837-38 and remained until his death. 

Dr. Ebenezer Johnson arrived in Buffalo in the latter half of 1809, 
bearing the following letter of introduction: — 

"Cherry Valley, 31st August, 1809. 
" Erastus Granger, Esq., 

" Dear Sir : — The bearer of this letter (Doctor Johnson^ is in pur- 
suit of a place in order to settle himself in his professional ousiness. I 
have directed him to call on you as the most suitable person to advise 
him of the propriety or impropriety of his settling in Buffalo. Doctor 
Johnson hiath been a student with Judge White before and ever since 
my partnership with the Judge, and it is but doing my duty to Dr. 
Johnson to state that he is a young man of unblemished morals, well 
read in his profession, and justly entitled to the patronage of the public. 

" I remain, with respect and esteem, 

" Your much obliged friend, 
" Hezekiah L. Granger." 

Although Dr. Johnson practiced his profession until after the war, 
in which he acted as surgeon, he afterwards became one of the foremost 
business men of the village. He was associated in business for several 
years with Judge Samuel Wilkeson, and subsequently became a banker 
and broker. Dr. Johnson was the first Mayor of Buffalo after its charter 
was received, and held the office two terms. In the financial revulsion 
of 1835-36 Dr. Johnson suffered heavily, almost his entire' fortune being 
swept away, and he found himself compelled to seek a field of labor in 
another State, where he engaged in working some iron mines which had 
come into his possession. He died a few years after leaving Buffalo. 
Dr. Johnson built for himself a stone mansion on Delaware street, which 
is now used as a residence connected with the Female academy. Mrs. 
Rev. Dr. Lord is a daughter of Dr. Johnson. 

Early Merchants. 43 

The name of Lovejoy is a historic one in connection with the early 
days of Buffalo. Joshua Lovejoy came to Buffalo as eariy, probably^ 
as 1807 or 1808, from Avon, where he had kept a hotel. His wife was 
brutally murdered at the burning of Buffalo; the details of this deed will 
appear hereafter. Mr. Lovejoy died in New York in 1824, aged 53 years. 

In the year 1807 Mr. Le Couteulx obtained permission from Mr. 
EUicott to cut away the timber on " the point " directly opposite the 
foot of Main street, on a tract as wide as the street, through which a view 
could be obtained of the lake from Mr. Le Couteulx' house on the comer 
of Main and Exchange streets. Previous to that time no view of the lake 
was presented from the village, except towards Fort Erie and Point 
Abino, through the opening in the forest at the mouth of Buffalo Creek. 

Benjamin Cftryl came to Buffalo in 1808. He lived at Willianosville 
when Buffalo was burned, but later in life returned to Buffalo and re- 
mained until his death. One of his daughters married Gen. Lucius 
Storrs ; another married Royal Colton, and afterwards Dr. Warner ; an- 
other married J. H. Coleman, and still another married R. W. Haskins ; 
all of whom at one time resided in Buffalo. 

Isaac Davis was one of the early merchants of Buffalo. His store 
and dwelling were located on the west side of Main, just below Seneca 
street. Mr. Davis suffered heavy pecuniary loss in the stringent times 
succeeding the war and died by his own hand in 181 8, at Canandaigua. 

Juba Storrs, who was one of the most prominent early merchants, came 
to Buffalo from Mansfield in 1808, with the intention of engaging in the 
practice of law, for which he had studied. The following extracts from 
letters written by Mr. Storrs to his father, not long after arriving at Buf- 
falo, are interesting, as descriptive of the place at that period : — 

Buffalo Creek. July 15, 1808. 

" My Dear Parent — You will perceive from the date ot this that I 
am farther from home than I contemplated when I left Mansfield. It is 
a good day's ride from Ontario, where I thought of makinjg^ a stand ; but 
the information which I received at Geneva and Canandaigua induced 
me to pursue my route to this place. You will find it on the map by 
the name of New Amsterdam. It is a considerable village, at the mouth 
of Buffalo creek, where it empties into Lake Erie, and is a port of entry 
for Lake Ontario, (Erie) the St. Lawrence river and all the western lakes, 
and will eventually be the Utica and more than the Utica of this western 

In a later letter Mr. Storrs wrote : — 

" My partner (who was Benjamin Caryl) nor myself have been able 
to obtain Irom EUicott a well situated village lot. Caryl contracted for 
a lot, with a house sufficient for a store, for five hundred dollars — then 
the best we could eet, for which I suppose we could get six hundred, 
if we did not think the rise would be something handsome within a 
short time." 

It was as early as 1809 or '10 that Mr. Storrs was associated with 
Benjamin Caryl and Samuel Pratt, Jr., in mercantile business. The 

44 History of Buffalo. 

firm erected a brick store on the northeast comer of Washington and 
Exchange streets, in 1810. This was, without doubt, the first brick 
structure built in Buffalo. While engaged in business, Mr. Pratt was 
appointed sheriff and Mr. Storrs, County Clerk. Mr. Pratt afterwarqs 
retired from the firm and Lucius Storrs, brother of Juba, took his place. 
In 181 2 the firm lease/1 mill property at the Eleven Mile Creek (now 
Williamsville.) After Buffalo was burned the mercantile branch of their 
business was removed to Canandaigua. 

What is now Niagara street was cut through the forest in 1809, but 
no road was made or traveled there until after the war. Travel then 
followed the " Gulf " road (Delaware) and Bouck street, and the Guide- 
Board road and beach. Henry Lovejoy wrote of the site and surround- 
ings of Buffalo in those days, as follows: — 

" Save a few houses on Main street, four or five on the lower end of 
Washington street, and seven or ei^ht on the lower end of Pearl street, one 
unbroken and primeval forest cast its shadows over and around the whole 
extent, relieved only by a little ray of light where the entrance to Buffalo 
creek revealed to the eye a glimpse of the broad expanse of Erie's waters. 
* * The lake shore above and below the mouth of the creek was one 
continuous arbor of trees covered with the native grape vine and so 
thickly were they matted together that it was no diflBcult task to pass 
from one to another on their tangled surface. This natural arbor con- 
tinued down the beach some distance below the mouth of the creek, 
when one came to what were called the Sand Hills ; they rose abruptly 
from the back part of the beach, some of them to a hic;ht of forty or fifty 
feet, and were covered on the back with full-sized forest trees to the 
summit ; in front they were nearly barren. Between the Sand Hills and 
the Terrace was a dense forest, except a . narrow strip called the Cran- 
berry marsh. The Sand Hills continued down to near Fort Porter. 

The records of the Holland Land Company show the following 
purchases of lots in Buffalo in 18 10: Wm. Best, Asahel Adkins, Asa 
Coltrin, Eli Hart, John MuUett, Gamaliel St John and Nathan Toles. 
Asa Coltrin was a physician and for a time associated with Dr. Cyrenius 
Chapin in business. John Mullett was a tailor and a partner of James 
Sweeney. Their place of business was on inner lot number 10, on Main 
street. The firm that afterwards did a merchant tailoring business there 
for years was Sweeney & Efner. 

Gamaliel St. John bore a name that must forever be conspicuous 
in the early history of Buffalo. He purchased inner lot S3 on the 24th 
of January, 18 10. On that lot he built the house that escaped the con- 
flagration on the 30th of December, 1813, through the heroic courage 
of Mrs. St. John. Gamaliel St. John was drowned early in June, 1813, 
while crossing the ferry in a scow; the boat drifted in the strong 
current against the hawser of a vessel and capsized. The following 
brief account of the accident was printed in the Buffalo Gazette of June 
8, 1813:— 

Events During i8io, 45 

" On Sunday last a boat upset by running afoul of the United States 
vessel, CaUdoniay anchored in the Niagara river at Black Rock. There 
were nine men in the boat ; one got on board the Caledoniay three saved 
themselves by swimming, and the remaining five were drowned, viz. : 
Gamaliel St John, (inn-keeper ot this village,) Elijah St. John, (son of the 
above,) Adam Rhoade^, of Swift's United States Volunteers, and two 
regular soldiers." 

Mrs. St. John was a woman of unusual strength of character, energy 
and fearlessness, and the account of her successful efforts to save her 
dwelling from the torch of the enemy, is as deeply interesting as the 
most thrilling incident of fiction, and stands out as an act of womanly 
heroism that has become historic ; particulars of this event appear in 
subsequent pages. One of the daughters of Mrs. St. John married Judge 
Samuel Wilkeson, and another (Aurelia), married Asaph S. Bemis, Octo- 
ber 3, 181 2. Mr. Bemis died December 13, 1823. His widow who 
escaped with her husband and younger sisters just before the burning of 
Buffalo, still lives in the city, having attained the great age of ninety 
years, on the 25th of January, 1883. 

Ralph M. Pomeroy about this time (18 10), erected his afterwards 
celebrated hotel on the northeast corner of Main and Seneca streets, 
where Brown's Buildings now stand. He purchased the lot (inner lot 7) 
of Samuel Tupper, and opened the hotel in 181 1. 

Raphael Cook came to Buffalo as early as 1810, rented a building and 
established a public house on Main street opposite Pomeroy *s. " Cook's 
Tavern " became a celebrated hostelry. Mr Cook returned to Buffalo 
after the war and opened a tavern on the site of the Tifft House, in a 
building known long after as the " Old Phoenix Hotel." He died April 
15, 1 82 1, aged sixty-five years. 

Dr. Daniel Chapin appears to have reached Buffalo at about this 
period. He afterwards became an energetic rival of Dr. Cy renins Chapin ; 
their controversies form an interesting topic in the early history of the 
medical profession. 

Eli Hart purchased inner lot 41, corner of Main and Erie streets 
and built a store on it where he, in connection with his brother-in-law, 
and later with a Mr. Cunningham, carried on the mercantile buisness for 
many years. 

Oliver Forward, who was a brother-in-law of Erastus Granger, came 
to Buffalo probably in 1809, from Ohio. In 181 1 fee occupied a small one- 
story wood dwelling on Pearl street in rear of what is now number 102 ; 
in an addition made to the building he acted as deputy postmaster and 
collector of customs for Judge Granger. In 18 14, after the destruction 
of his first residence, Mr. Forward built a double two story brick build- 
ing (on the site of his former home) which was then considered the finest 
residence in the village. In the northern half of it the postoffice and col- 
lector s office were established. Mr. Forward succeeded Judge Granger 

46 History of Buffalo. 

as collector, and was afterwards appointed an Associate^ Judge of the 
Court of Common Pleas. Judge Forward was in all respects one of 
the foremost men of his time and was instrumental in forwarding all im- 
portant projects looking to the advancement of the village. He died in 
April, 1832. He has been described as of medium stature, but portly ; of 
grave and dignified presence; one whose imposing appearance would 
have been marked in any assembly of men. 

On the 10th of February, 18 10, a law was passed creating the town 
of Buffalo, which embraced within its boundaries the present city. That 
was the first instance of the legal application of the name " Buffalo " to a 
tract of territory with definite boundaries. Buffalo was formed from 
Clarence, and then included Tonawanda, Grand Island, Amherst, 
Cheektowaga and a part of West Seneca. Amherst, including Cheek- 
towaga, was taken off in 181 8, and Tonawanda in 1836. Buffalo City 
remained a part of the town until 1840. 

Dr. Josiah Trowbridge, a pioneer physician, the events of whose 
long life in Buffalo stamped him as an eminent man, came to the village 
in 181 1, when he was twenty-six years old. During the succeeding fifty 
years he occupied a distinguished position, both as a physician and as a 
citizen. He was mayor of the city in 1837 and filled other positions 
of trust. Dr. Trowbridge died September 22, 1862. Further reference 
to his life will be found in a subsequent chapter devoted to the medical 

There were two arrivals in Buffalo in the year 181 1 that were 
destined to exert a broad influence upon the near future of the place, 
especially in a business and commercial sense. These were Charles 
Townsend (afterwards Judge Townsend) and George Coit, both of whom 
came from Norwich, Conn., where they had been fellow clerks in a drug 
store. They came to Buffalo possessed of considerable means, and soon 
estiablished themselves in the drug business on Main street, which they 
continued until 18 18, when they sold to Dr. John E. Marshall, father of 
Hon. O. H. Marshall. They then engaged in the storage and forwarding 
business, at the foot of Commercial street, where they erected large 
buildings for that purpose.* The firm subsequently joined with Sheldon 
Thompson & Co., who removed to Buffalo from Black Rock atter the 
completion of the Erie canal, and an immense business was built up by 
the consolidated firms, under the name of the Troy and Erie Line, with 
connections east and west. The firm dissolved in 1844. Mr. Coit lived 
many years on the corner of Pearl and Swan streets. In the early 
development of lake and canal commerce, the construction of the harbor 
and other matters of importance to the growing village, the firm of 
Townsend & Coit were instrumental. In a paper prepared in the later 

* See biogrmphic sketches of Mr. Townsend, Mr. Ooit and O. H. Marshall, in snbaequent 


Description of Buffalo in i8ii. 47 

years of his life, Judge Townsepd gave the following vivid description 
of Buffalo early ia 1811 : — 

'<In 181 1, Buffalo contained less than one hundred dwellings, and a 
population of some four or five hundred. The only public buildings 
were the old stone jail on Washington street, and an unfinished wooden 
court house. A small wooden building put up for a school house, served 
also for a town hall, a church for all religious denominations and, indeed, 
for all public purposes. Three taverns were kept, one by Mr. Landon, 
occupying a part of the site of the Mansion House, another of more 
moderate pretensions, at the comer of Main and Seneca streets, and a 
third near the comer of Main and Court streets. The only merchants 
were Juba Storrs & Co., Grosvenor & Heacock, Eli Hart and Isaac 
Davis, the first being located on the corner of Washington and Exchange 
streets, and the others on Main between South Division and Exchange 
streets. A mail from Albany brought once or twice a week, in a wooden- 
spring lumber wagon, was openea by Oliver Forward, a justice of the 
peace. Judge Granger held the office of postmaster ana also that of 
collector of the port; the latter an office rather of honor than of business 
profit. The commerce of the lakes was small. I think there were only four 
or five small vessels on our side, and two or three merchantmen, besides 
two British armed vessels on the other. There was no harbor here. The 
mouth of Buffalo creek was usually so much obstructed by a sand bar, 
that small vessels could but rarely enter, and even canoes were some- 
times shut out, and footmen walked dry-shod across the mouth. Vessels 
were loaded and unloaded at a wharf near Bird Island, at Black Rock.** 

Abel M. Grosvenor purchased the article for inner lot 38, which had 
been taken up by David Mather, in 1806. Mr. Grosvenor came to 
Buffalo in 181 1 ; with him wa$ Mr. Reuben B. Heacock, and they opened 
a store on Main street, nearly opposite Mr. Grosvenor's purchase, under 
the firm name of Grosvenor & Heacock. Each of these men married 
the sister of the other. Mr. Grosvenor went East about the last of 1812 
and died soon after. Mr. Heacock continued in business in Buffalo for 
many years and was a man of infTuence and high character ; he was 
once elected to the Legislature. He was ^foremost in organizing the 
Hydraulic Company that afterwards utilized the waters of Buffalo 
creek foi* milling purposes, and stood in the front rank of the active 
business men of Buffalo for nearly a quarter of a century. He died in 
iSS3* Well known descendants of Mr. Heacock now reside in Buffalo. 

Joseph Stocking and Joseph Bull estabUshed the first hat manufac- 
tory and fur business in Buffalo, in 181 1. They bought inner lot 1 1, cor- 
ner of Main and Seneca streets, and built a manufactory in the rear on 
Washington street ; this factory was but just finished when the war 
broke out. After their factory was burned, they removed that part of 
their business to Canandaigua, supplying their store from there. 

Heman B. Potter arrived in Buffalo at this time from Columbia 
county, and began a distinguished legal career that continued for nearly 
half a century. He was afterwards well-known as General Potter, and 
died October 7, 1854. 

48 History of Buffalo. 

The active life-work of many of the men whose names have been given, 
and others who, with their immediate descendants, were prominently 
instrumental in the early settlement and growth of Buffalo, both before 
and after the war of 1812, will be often referred to in future chapters 
upon the different interests and institutions of the place and in biographic 

It was at about this period (181 1) that Deacon Callender, in connec- 
tion with General Elijah Holt, organized a society for the suppression of 
vice and immorality, of which the latter was president and the former 
was secretary. The society published the following resolutions in the 
Gazette : — 

Resolution of the Moral Society of Buffalo. 

" Resolved, That after the 23d of November, inst., the laws of the 
State prohibiting violations of the Sabbath, shall be strictly enforced 
against all persons who, on that day, shall drive into the village loadecl 
teams, or who shall unload goods, wares and merchandise, or who shall 
vend goods or keep open stores or shops for the purpose of trading or 
laboring, or who shall engage in hunting, fishing, etc., etc. ; also agamst 
all parties of pleasure, ricnng or walking to Black Rock or elsewhere. 

^'Resolved, That the above resolution be published two weeks in the 
Gazette, published in this village, that strangers as well as villagers may 
be informed of the same, and govern themselves accordingly. 

" By order of the Society, 

"A. Callender, Secretary." 

Those resolutions proposed what was undoubtedly the most radical 
reform movement ever inaugurated in Buffalo ! It may be entertaining 
to meditate upon what the good Deacon and his co-laborers meant to 
cover by those two comprehensive " etceteras." It is related of Deacon 
Callender that when he once saw one of his neighbors carting hay to his 
bam publicly on the Sabbath, he went to the offender and remonstrated 
with him ; when the Sabbath-breaker insisted upon going on with the 
work, the Deacon told him he would certainly see that the law was 
enforced against him. If this incident is a fact, it is not unlikely that 
the Society really effected an improvement in the morals of the village. 

Although a church society was formed in Buffalo in the latter part 
of the year 1809, by the union of the few Congregationalists and Presby- 
terians there, under direction of the Rev. Thaddeus Osgood, little appears 
to have been accomplished in that direction. Down to the time of the 
war, religious services in the village were irregular, depending chiefly 
upon the missionaries in the vicinity. It was, possibly, for this reason 
that Buffalo acquired a reputation for immorality that was, to say the 
least, unenviable, although it may have been exaggerated. The early 
files of the Gazette show frequent complaints from correspondents upon 
this topic ; these complaints were mainly directed against Sabbath-break- 
ing, " tippling," and kindred breaches of good morals. On the other hand. 

Early Morality of Buffalo. 49 

the Gazette published a letter in January, 181 2, written by a clergyman to 
" a gentleman in this village/* in which he said : — 

** From what I had heard I supposed that the people in general were 
so fi^veu to dissipation and vice that the preachers of Christianity would 
find few or no ears to hear ; but most agreeably disappointed wan I to 
find my audiences not only respectable in point of numbers, but solemn, 
decent, devout and which seemed gladly to hear the word." 

This paragraph indicates that the village had been misrepresented ; 
but, unfortunately, the " clergyman '* did not feel justified in leaving the 
subject at that point, for he added his regret that there was so '' little at- 
tention paid by the magistrates in regulating the Sabbath. While the 
Sabbath is thus neglected, no clergyman of decent character would 
tarry there but a short time.'* 

Sometime before Nov. 12, 181 1, the Washington Benevolent Society 
was organized, as in the Gazette of that date we find a call for a meet- 
ing of the society, signed by Heman B. Potter. Leading citizens were 
for years conspicuous in the proceedings of this organization. 

A traveller named John Melish visited Buffalo on the 27th of 
October, 181 1, and afterwards wrote the following description of what 
he saw : — 

'' Buffalo is handsomely situated at the east end of Lake Erie, where 
it commands a beautiful view of the Lake, of Upper Canada, and Fort 
Erie, and a fi'reat distance to the southward, wnich is terminated by 
an elevated lofty country. The site of the town extends quite to the 
lake shore, but is principally built on an eminence of about thirty feet, at 
a little distance ; and to tne south along the creek are handsome rich 
bottom lots, which are at present a little marshy, but will, when drained, 
be most valuable appendages to this beautiful place. Buffalo was laid out 
for a town about five years ago, and is regularly disposed in streets and lots. 
The lots are from sixty to one hundred feet deep, and sell from twenty- 
five to fifty dollars ; and there are out lots of five and ten acres, worth at 
E resent from ten to twenty-five dollars per acre. The population was by 
LSt census three hundred and sixty-five ; it is now computed at five hun- 
dred, and is rapidly increasing. The buildings are mostly of wood, 
painted white ; but there is a number of good bnck houses, and some few 
of stone. There are four taverns, eight stores, two schools, and a weekly 
newspaper has been recently established. The town is as yet too new 
for the introduction of any manufactures, except those of a domestic kind. 
The greater part of the people are farmers and mechanics. The settlers 
are mostly from New England, but the town being on the great thor- 
ourhfare to the western country, there is a general mixture. A consid- 
enu>le trade is constantly kept up by the innux and reflux of strangers, 
and such articles as are necessary for their accommodation are dear. 
House rent is from two 'to twenty dollars per week ; wood is one dollar 

Kr cord ; flour is seven dollars per barrel ; pork six dollars per cwt ; 
ef four dollars ; porter six dollars per dozen. Fish are very plenty and 
cheap. Boarding is three dollars per week. The situation is quite 
healthy, and the seasons are much more mild and open than might be 
expectra in this northern latitude. Buffalo creek flows into the lake by 

so History of Buffalo, 

a slow current. It is navigable about four miles, and it is proposed to 
run a pier into the lake at its outlet, and form a harbor, which would be 
a most important advantage to this part of the country. Already there 
is a turnpike road to New York, having the accommodation of a stage 
three times a week. Upon the whole I think this is likely to become a 
great settlement." 

The writer of the history of Buffalo from the arrival of the first settler 
down to the latter part of the year i8i i, finds himself thwarted at almost 
every step in his task, by the absence of almost all records other than 
such as have been made since that date from the memories of old 
residents ; this, as the reader has perceived, necessarily renders the work 
thus far little more than a personal record of the early settlers, the dates 
of their arrivals, the lots purchased and similar notes. 

When the village was burned in 1812-13, all records of a public 
nature (if there were any) and many private papers were destroyed. 
Fortunately, a file of the Buffalo Gazette^ from the second number, has 
been preserved. This was the first newspaper published in the county. 
The first number was issued October 3, 181 1, by two brothers. Smith H. 
and Hezekiah A. Salisbury, the former being the editor. Thanks to the 
foresight of those two men and the no less wise care of those who came 
after them, we now have access to an almost complete file of the Gazette^ 
now in the possession of the Buffalo Young Men's Association. Access 
to it and to the files of succeeding journals will mark a change in the 
results of the historian's labor. 

The prominent features of the village of Buffalo at the period under 
consideration, the state of its business, new arrivals, and especially the 
character of early journalism in the county, will be better understood, if 
we refer briefly to the columns of the early numbers of that rough little 
yellow-hued sheet. 

One or two very brief local items of news, at the most, seemed to 
satisfy the ambition of the editors of the Gazette in those days, and many 
numbers were issued without a single line referring to local events. 
This was the general custom among the journals of that day, the editors 
apparently thinking that local events would become well-known to 
readers through other mediums than the press. 

Mechanical business appears to have been in a flourishing condition 
in Buffalo in those days, if we may judge by the frequent ad vertisements 
for mechanical help. Tallmadge & MuUett called for two or three jour- 
ne3rmen tailors ; John Tower for a journeyman shoemaker ; Daniel Lewis 
for a " Taylor's " apprentice and a journeyman ; Stocking & Bull for three 
or four journeymen hatters; and Leech & Keep for two or three journey- 
men blacksmiths, at their shop at Cold Spring, " two miles from the village 
of Buffalo." The Salisburys kept a bookstore in connection with their 
printing business, it being the first in the county. Their catalogue of 
about a hundred and fifty books, contained the names of only eleven novels. 

Extracts from the " Gazettb," 5 1 

In the Gazette of March 11, 181 2, appeared the folio winf2f ominous 
statement: — 

'' By a law of Uoper Canada, lately passed, the militia of the province 
are to turn out and drill six days in every month. What does it mean?" 

In the same issue the question of approaching war was thus dis- 
cussed, which was at least a very safe conclusion : — 

"We are frequently interrogated^ 'Shall we have war?' to which 
we would say, that for the^e few years past our country has sustained a 
most bloodless war of words ; now it is a furious combat on paper ; but 
whether we are to have war or peace, or remain as we are, time will 

March 10, 1812, the Western Star Lodge of Free Masons, undoubt- 
edly the first lodge of that order in the village, or county, gave notice 
that they would install the officers of the lodge. 

On the 26th of March, the mechanics of the village organized the 
Mechanical Society, the first association of that nature in the place. 
Joseph Bull was elected president ; Henry M. Campbell and John Mul- 
lett, vice-presidents'; and Robert Keene. Asa Stanard, David Reese, 
Daniel Lewis and Samuel Edsall, as a standing committee. 

The last named gentleman advertised his tannery and shoe shop 
in the Giusette as located " on the Black Rock road, near the village 
of Buffalo." It really stood on what is now the comer of Niagara and 
Mohawk streets! 

The Gazette complained in those days of the insecure condition of 
the jail, saying, *' The g^eat majority of felons committed to jail have 
deserted, and but few are brought to justice." 

In his advertisement of earthenware at Cold Spring, Lyman Parsons 
showed considerable leniency towards his debtors by requesting all 
those " indebted to him and whose promises have become due, to make 
payment or fresh promises ! " No one could object to compliance with 
this modest request. 

The usual comprehensiveness of the country store prevailed in those 
of Buffalo at that time. Nathaniel Sill & Co. sold fish and cider at 
Black Rock. Peter H. Colt, of the same place, dispensed "whisky, 
gin, buffalo robes and feathers," while Townsend & Coit, of Buffalo, 
advertised " linseed oil and new goods," 

As a possible indication of the rare honesty of the publishers of the 
Gazette^ it is noted that they advertise for the owner of " a green cotton 
umbrella left at their office." 

In the issue of Noveipber 26, 181 1, a meeting of the inhabitants of 
Buffalo was called to take into consideration the propriety of making an 
early application to the Legislature, soliciting assistance to " effectually 
amend and improve the Public Road from this village to the village of 
Batavia." In the same issue, Joseph Webb advertises his brewery at 
Black Rock — probably the first of the kind in the vicinity. 

52 History of Buffalo. 

Townsend & Coit advertised in the Gazette of December lo, 1811, 
new goods, groceries, medicines, etc., '^ at the brick store opposite the 
court house," and M. Daley, located in the drug business "one door 
south of the printing office." 

On the 17th of December, 181 1, T. McEuen announced that he had 
" taken the stand one door north of Mr. Cook's inn," as a shoe maker 
and dealer in leather. 

A meeting was held on the 3d of December, 181 1, to take steps 
towards raising money by a lottery, for the improvement of roads. The 
call was signed by Archibald S. Clark, Abel M. Grosvenor, Joseph Lan- 
don, Frederick Miller, Timothy S. Hopkins and Asa Harris. 

Early numbers of the Gazette show that in some instances the people 
still clung to the name of ''New Amsterdam." The "Ecclesiastical 
Society " was announced to meet "at the school house in the village of 
New Amsterdam," and Grosvenor & Heacock advertised new goods at 
their store in New Amsterdam. 

Down to the latter part of 181 1, the name of Buffalo had been almost 
universally spelled with a final " e ;" but from that time the superfluous 
letter was gradually dropped. The efforts of the editor of the Gazette 
undoubtedly hastened this reform, for he not only refused to make use of 
the objectionable final letter himself, but unsparingly ridiculed its use by 
others. In the Gazette of Dec. 29, 18 11, was printed a satirical report of 
an alleged lawsuif in the " Court of the People's Bench of Buffalo-e " in 
which " Ety Mol O Gist " was plaintiff and General Opinion defendant. 
Following is an extract from the proceedings of the court : — 

" This was an action brought before the court for purloining the 
fifth letter of the alphabet and clapping it on the end of the name, Buffalo. 
The plaintiff contended that he had both reason and right on his side and 
that he could not only prove from high authority tnat the defendant 
was guilty not only of a gross derehction in thus adding the silent, 
superfluous 'e' to the high sounding Buff-aJo, but that he had in his 
filchings, taken one of the official functionaries, one of the most important 
members of the alphabet, one in fact introduced into all circles, parties, 
societies and even into electioneering caucuses, and. placed him where 
his usefulness would be entirely abridged; where he must raise his 
final head in silence; where he would be known only in name. The 
plaintiff now proceeded after some pertinent* remarks to the court, in 
which he pointed out the enormity of the offense of General Opinion, 
to call his witnesses. Several dictionaries were brought forth and exam- 
ined, who testified from Dr. Johnson down to Noah Webster. General 
Use, who was subpoenaed by both parties, was qualified. He said he did 
not hesitate to state to the court that he had been in the constant practice 
of dating his notes, receipts and memoranda with ' Buffalo-e,' but that since 
the establishment of a public paper he should accommodate his conscience 
to cut it short and dock off the final ' e.' " 

Between the methods of journalism prevailing in Buffalo at the time 
when the early numbers of the Gazette were issued, and those of to-day, 

The Growth of Black Rock. 53 

the change is more marked than in almost any other business or protes- 
sion. Columns were devoted to foreign intelligence, much of it of minor 
interest in this country, to the neglect of important domestic and local 
news. Othel-wise the Gazette was ably conducted and for many years 
was an influential newspaper. 

As Black Rock, although at a later date a rival of Buffalo^ has since 
been absorbed by it, some reference to its g^wth and position before 
the War of 18 12 will be necessary. The fact has already been stated 
that the State fonderly owned what was known as the *^ mile strip " of 
land lying along the Niagara river from Lake Erie, commencing near the 
present foot of Genesee street, to Lake Ontario. This tract was sur- 
veyed in 1803-04, being cut into farm lots of about one hundred and 
sixty acres each. On the south side of Scajaquada creek, four lots were 
laid out and adjoining on them a lot of one hundred acres, called the 
^' Ferry lot" The triangle formed by a line running from a point where 
the south line of the ferry lot struck the mile line, to the river, was to 
be reserved for military purposes, should it become necessary. The 
remainder of the mile strip extending on a curve to the village of Buffalo, 
was to be surveyed into a village plat and called Black Rock ; this was 
afterwards generally known as Upper Black Rock. The four farm lots 
above mentioned were purchased by Porter, Barton & Co., in connection 
with a few others and surveyed in 181 1« into a village plat and to distin- 
guish it from the State village, it was called Lower Black Rock.* 

The old ferry at the Black Rock had, it appears, been in use nearly 
or quite as far back as the Revolutionary war. In his interesting paper 
read before the Historical Society in 1863, Mr. Charles D. Norton says 
of the ferry: — 

** Here [on the Black Rock side] one Con. O'Neil was the ferryman 
at a verv early day, living by the ' black rock ' in a hut which was at 
once his terry-house and bis home. In the year 1800, there was a toler- 
able road over the site of the present Fort street, leading to the river 
margin over a flat or plateau of land about two hundred ^et in width. 
Upon the northern extremity of this plateau there was a black rock, in 

*Hormtio Jonet and Jasper Parrish, botli of whom were Indian captives in early life, were ap- 
pointed Indian interpreters after their release, which followed the- treaty of peace between the 
United States and the Six Nations. During their captivity and the subsequent period of their service 
as interpreters, these two men gained the friendship of the Indians to sudi an extent that in 1798, 
at a council of the Six Nations, held at Genesee river, it was decreed that a present should be made 
them. This present comprised two square miles of land which was described in a speech made on 
that occasion by Farmer's Brother, as follows :^ 

'*Two square miles of land lyin^ on the outlet of Lake Erie, be^nning at the mouth of a credc 
known as Snyguqnoydes creek, running one mile from the Niagara nver up said creek, thence north- 
•eriy, as the river runs, two miles, thence westerly one mile to the river, thence up the river, as the 
river runs, two miles to the place of beginning, so as to contain two square miles." 

ThiiK speech was intended as a communication to the Legislature of the State, asking its co- 
opeiBtton in making the gift, whidi request was granted and the t itle confirmed. The village of Black 
Rode is situated upon a portion of the Jones and Parrish tract. Horatio Jones died in 1836, aged 
«eventy-five yean ; Parrish died in the same year, aged sixty-nine. 

54 History of Buffalo. 

shape an irregular trianfi^Ie, projecting into the river ; having a breadth 
of about one hundred Teet at the north end, and extending southward 
and along the river for a distance of three hundred feet, gradually inclin- 
ing to the southeast until it was lost in the sand. The rock was four or 
five feet hieh, and at its southern extremity it was square, so that an eddy 
was formed there, into which the ferry-boat could be brought, and where 
it would be beyond the influence of the current. From the rock, teams 
could be driven into the boat over a connecting lip or bridge. The 
natural harbor thus formed, was almost perfect and could not have been 
made by the appliances of art a more complete dQck or landing-place 
for a boat" 

A hamlet eventually grew up at and near this point before the war of 
1812. It was this locality that Joseph EUicott referred to in a letter 
written" to Paul Busti in 1802, when he said: — 

" There is a situation * * equal to or better than that of New 
Amsterdam for a town : so that if the State offers the land for sale this 
summer, before New Amsterdam gets into operation, much of time will 
be lost to the future prosperity of the place.' 

Major Frederick Miller* took possession of the Ferry at Black Rock 
in the year 1806, and retained it until about 18 12. The ferry was discon- 
tinued at one time during the war of 18 12, after the boat had been fired 
upon by British soldiers, as elsewhere narrated, and the boats were sunk 
at the mouth of Scajaquada creek, whence they were taken by the British 
and carried over to Canada. They were afterwards retakep and. used by 
the Americans, and after peace was declared were turned over to Mr. 
Lester Brace,.t who had managed the ferry before the war. At the dec- 
laration of peace Mr. Brace opened the tavern at Black Rock and re- 
sumed operation of the ferry, continuing there until 1821. In that year 
Asa Stanard took the ferry, which he managed until the construction 
of the Erie canal rendered its removal to another point necessary. Asa 

* Mr. Frederick Miller ctme to reside at Btedc Kock «t a very earij period. His name appears 
as the first licensed ferryman at Blade Rock feny, when the State fiist began to exercise jnrisdiction 
orer it, in i8o5-'o6. He kept the feny and a Uvern at the feny hmding vntil iSio^ when he re. 
moved to Bnilalo. He remained howeirer but a year, when he removed to Cold Sprfaig» where he 
kept a tarem. Daring the war, he removed to WiUiamsviUe where he remafaied until Ms death, 
which occurred in Jannaiy, 1836. Mr. Miller served daring the war of 1819, in the capacity of Ma* 
jor of artillery ; hence his title of *' Major " by which he was afterwards known. The Major was an 
onedacated man, but an energetic and oseful officer and mach esteemed by the officers of the army. 
He left a large family of children ; Mrs. Gen. H. B. Potter was a daughter, 'the late Capt. William 
T. Millerand Capt Fred S. Miller were his sons.— AV/lr^flMftV HistotyofBuffaUandtkeSemcas. 

f I have said before that Mr. Lester Brace visited the ferry in 1807. It would be unnecessary 
to say more of him than that be was a son of Orange Brace, one of the hardy and resolute men who 
oune to western New York from New England in zyga Mr. Lester Brace left Bennington in what 
is now Wyoming county, with an oz team and wagon, accompanied by some neighbors, to visit the 
frontier on business ; and crossing the Indian reservation, his party were overtaken in the woods by 
a severe snow storm which drove them under their wagon for dielter and compelled them to remain 
there all night. Pursuing their joamey, they, reached Landon's tavern, now the Mansion House; 
and turning into Commercial street, they traveled by way of the creek and lake beach down to Major 
Miller's tovem at the old ferry.— CItfj. D. NorUm\s paptr read before ike Hulorieal Boeidy in 1863. 

Rivalry Between Buffalo and Black Rock. 55 

Stanard was one of the first boat and shipbuilders at Black Rock, hav- 
ing a yard there before 18 12. The ferry was removed to the foot of 
Ferry street, and in 1826 Donald Fraser* and Lester Brace became its 
lessees. They placed a horse boat on the ferry, Mr. Brace making the 
journey to Albany to ascertain what were the merits of the novel inven- 
tion which the Legislature had required them to adopt ; he brought the 
machinery for the boat. It was nothing more than a wheel upon a nearly 
horizontal plane, which propelled the boat by means of cogs playing into 
the main shaft In 1840 James Haggart leased the ferry and began the 
use of a steamboat. 

" When Mr. Brace first visited the Rock in 1807,** says Mr. Norton, 
" there were no buildings in the vicinity, except the Porter, Barton. & Co., 
warehouse * * at the foot of Breckenridge street ; a house which 
Nathaniel Sill had built on Auburn street, and a log hut on the site of 
Albany street." 

This firm of Porter, Barton & Co., was a powerful one for those 
times. The head of the firm was Peter B. Porter, then of Canandaigua, 
afterwards the distinguished commander whose services during the war 
of 1812, have been narrated in the preceding volume. In 1810, when he 
was thirty-seven years old, Mr. Porter removed to Black Rock. He had 
been an attorney at Canandaigua and is.described as " unmarried, a hand- 
some, portly gentlemen of the old school, of smooth address, fluent of 
speech and dignified demeanor." The other members of the firm were 
Augustus Porter, the older brother of Peter B., Benjamin Barton, Jr., 
and Joseph Annin. In the year 1807, ^^^^ A^^™ began the first regular 
transportation business over the portage around the falls, and up the 
river to Black Rock. From there their vessels took the freight out 
upon the great lakes. The firm was connected with Jonathan Walton & 
Co., of Schenectady, who forwarded freight from the East by way of the 
Mohawk, Oneida Lake, Oswego and Lake Ontario. Other important 
business connections east and west were also formed by Porter, Barton & 
Co., giving them eventually a large traffic. One of the principal com- 
modities handled in those days, by this firm, was salt from Syracuse, 
which then commanded enormous prices. An old resident informs us 
that his father once drew a load of thirty or forty bushels of potatoes 
nearly twenty miles with an ox team, consuming two days in the round 
trip, only to exchange the entire load lor a barrel of salt ! 

For a year or two previous to 181 1, considerable rivalry existed 
between Black Rock and Bu£Falo, the forerunner of other protracted 

* Major Fraser was a gallant soldier and was aid to General Porter at the siege of Fort Erie daring 
the war of i8ia, when his gallantry and soldierly conduct received the most flattering notice in the 
despatches of the General to the Commander-in-chief. Major Fraser was afterward on the staff of 
Generd Brown ; sabaeqnently he served at Fort Niagara ; and at a later period he acted as secretary 
to Genera] Porter, while he was engaged as the United States Commissioner iq surveying and estab- 
lishing the northern boundary between the United States and Canada nnder the treaty of Ghent. 

56 History of Buffalo. 

periods of antagonism as to which was entitled to the pOrt of entry. 
Erastus Granger, as early as 1809, entered a vigorous protest to the gov* 
ernment, against locating the port at Black Rock. In that year an odd 
compromise was made by establishing the port for the district of Buffalo 
Creek, at Black Rock from April ist to December ist of each year. As 
that period covered almost the entire commercial season, the effect of 
the order will be readily conceived. 

On the 22d of September, 1812, S. Franklin advertised the tavern 
he then occupied, at Black Rock, to let. It stood nearly opposite the 
dwelling house of General Porter. Orange Dean announced (he open- 
ing of a tavern by him, in the building formerly occupied by Nathaniel 
Sill ; he also kept a stock of groceries. Allen Leonard was then a shoe- 
maker there. 

Before the breaking out of the war, Porter, Barton & Co. built a 
large pier just below Bird Island, where all of their vessels loaded and 
unloaded freight; after the war their docks below the rapids were used. 
When their vessels weite ready for lake voyages and there was not 
enough wind to sail them up the stream, teams of oxen and horses were 
utilized to tow them up. This method of navigation became known as 
the " horn breeze." 

At the breaking out of the war considerable additions had been made 
to the little hamlet of Black Rock ; among them were E. D. Efner, who 
died in 1873, Sylvester Mathews and others. 



Destruction of the Two Villages — Their Fortifications — Cannonading of Black Rock — William 
DonJieimer's Account of the Burning of the Villages— Incidents — Mrs. Bidwell's Flight — 
A Late Breakf ast — Peace Movements— The Riot at Pomeroy's Hotel— "Hank" John- 
son's Heroism — The St John Family — A Heroic Woman — Massacre of Mrs. Lovejoy — 
Preservation of Valuables — Alfred Hodge's Escape — Samuel Wilkeson*s New Acquaintance 
— Flight of William Hodge's Family — Job Hoysington's Last Shot — Mr. Keep's Death— 
The Killed and Captured — General Flight— Treachery under a Flag of Truce. 

THE history of Bu£Falo and Black Rock during the years 1812- 13, in 
addition to the minor notes already given, is mainly a record of the 
war and its stirring events in the vicinity. A full, general history 
of the campaigns of that conflict, the reader has already found in the 
first volume of this work. It will, therefore, be sufficient for our present 
purpose to state that at the close of the campaign of 181 3, on the 30th 

The Defenses of Buffalo. 57 

day of December and the ibt day of January, 1814, the village of Buffalo 
and the smaller settlement at Black Rock were set on fire by the British 
soldiers and their Indian allies, and swept from the face of the earth, 
leaving only the smoking ruins to indicate that they had ever been the 
dwelling p&ce of civilized men and women. David Reese's blacksmith 
shop, the dwelling of Mrs. Gamaliel St. John just north of the hotel her 
husband had erected on Main street, and the stone jail, were the only 
buildings that escaped the torches of the enemy. 

The fortifications that had been prepared for the defense- of the 
villages during or before the war were, as far as now known, a "sailor's 
battery" of three long 32-pounders, located near the mouth of Scaja- 
quada creek; a battery of three g^ns on Niagara street, near the 
former residence of William A. Bird ; Fort Tompkins that stood on the 
site of the Niagara street railroad stables ; a mortar battery with one 
i8-inch mortar, near the site of the water works : a breastwork on the 
Terrace, and a 24-pounder on the northerly comer of the Fort Porter 

While the village of Buffalo had not, at the time of its destruction, 
advanced far toward the fulfillment of the enthusiastic predictions of its 
founders, still it had through the undaunted energy, untiring industry, 
and earnest faith of its citizens, become a busy and promising village, as 
described in the foregoing pages. 

On the morning o^ the 9th of October, 181 2, Black Rock suffered a 
heavy cannonading by the British batteries on the Canadian side, during 
which some three hundred shots were fired. Mrs. Benjamin Bid well 
has furnished some interesting reminiscences to the Historical Society 
in which she states that this cannonade drove them from their residence 
early in the morning. As she and her husband were hurrying to her 
sister's where there was a cellar in which they might secure a refuge, a 
cannon ball passed so near them that a little girl she was leading was 
knocked down by the rush of the wind created by the ball. They then 
fled to the woods where they found several families. Mrs. Bid well 
obtained some food, built a fire in the woods and was engaged in cooking 
breakfast by an improvised fire, when another cannon ball struck directly 
in the fire and scattered the breakfast in all directions. In a determination 
to finally get out of range, the family then made their way through the 
woods to Cold Spring, where Mrs. Bidwell cooked another breakfast 
which was eaten at four o'clock in the afternoon 1 

It was the first shot in this cannonade that killed Major William 
Howe Cuyler, of Palmyra, as he was galloping with orders along the 
river road, before five o'clock in the morning. 

Black Rock was again cannonaded on the 13th of October, 181 3, 
and a good deal of damage was done to t&e buildings. Two shots 
passed through Orange Dean's house, in noting which the Buffalo 

58 History of Buffalo. 

Gazette added the distressing detail that one of them "bilged a barrel of 
old Pittsburgh whiskey in the cellar, belonging to Peter H. Colt." A 
24-pound shot also struck General Porter's house while the family were 
at dinner, and a bomb "struck the east barracks and destroyed them." 

A peace meeting was held on the 15th of October, 1812, in " Pome- 
roy's Long Room, to take measures having for their object [^the termina- 
tion of the war and the restoration of peace." This meeting was adjourned 
to the 24th, and that was, probably, the last of the peace movement 

A correspondent wrote for the Gazette on the 25th of December, 
18 12, to the e£Fect that he "was desired yesterday evening, to request 
you to insert in your paper an invitation to the good people of Niagara 
county to meet on Friday next at the house of R. Cook, at 10 o'clock, to 
consult on measures of public safety and, if possible, concert some means 
to avert the impending dangers which are so visibly threatening our 
once peaceable and happy homes." As far as we have learned, this meet- 
ing did not take place. 

But these incidents were unimportant when compared with what 
soon followed. The burning of Buffalo and Black Rock and the incidents 
immediately connected with it, was one of the most tragic events in the 
history of the war of 181 2. The following extract from a paper on 
"Buffalo during the war of 18 12,'' read by William Dorsheimer, before 
the Buffalo Historical Society, March 13, 1863, gives a vivid general 
picture of the destruction of the two villages and cccurrences immed- 
iately preceding : — 

" On the nineteenth of December, 1 813, an English force, under Col- 
onel Murray, surprised and captured Fort Niagara. The villages from 
Fort Niagara to the Falls were soon after burned. The disposable Ameri- 
can forces were hastily concentrated at Buffalo, under command of Briga- 
dier-General Amos Hall. The whole force was two thousand and eleven 
men ; but the troops were raw, undisciplined, poorly armed, and without 
a sufficient supply of ammuntion. 

"On the evening of the twenty-ninth, the British Left, consisting of 
eight hundred regulars and militia and two hundred Indians, landed 
below Conjaquadies creek, and took possession of the sailors' battery. 
General Hall ordered the troops at the Rock to dislodge them. The first 
fire threw our militia into disorder, and the attack failed. Major Adams 
and Colonel Chapin were then ordered forward to carry the battery ; but, 
after a short skirmish, their men fled, and were not again embodied. The 
Ontario command under Colonel Blakeslie were then sent up. But, before 
the attack had begun, the day broke and revealed the English center 
crossmg to our shore, in the rear of General Porter's house ; and about 
the same time their right landed in small force, near Fort Tompkins. 
The mvaders were commanded by Lieutenant-General Drummond, but 
were under the immediate direction of Major-General Riall. 

" This disposition of the foe compelled General Hall to change his 
plan. The order to Colonel Blakeshe was countermanded, and he was 
directed to attack the English center at the water's edge. The enemy's 
left wmg was soon discovered moving from Conjaquadies creek upon 

The Capture of Buffalo. 59 

our right ; the Indians under Colonel Granger, and the Canadian volun- 
teers under Colonel Mallory, were advanced to meet them, and Colonel 
McMahon's regiment was held in reserve. Lieutenant Seely opened the 
engagement with his 6.pounder, and a 20-pounder and two twelves at the 
battery were soon brought into service. At the same time the batteries 
on the other side ot the river threw a heavy fire of shell, round and hot 
shot: Colonel Blakeslie held his force in line, and as the enemy landed, 
poured upon them a most destructive fire. On our ri^ht, however, but 
a feeble resistance was pflFered. All the corps hacT been gradually 
reduced by desertion, which began with the first shot, in the night. 
Perceivine the danger to his right, General Hall ordered up the reserve 
under Colonel McMahon, to hold the eneniy in check. But this corps 
disgracefull)^ scattered before it came under nre. The whole right wing 
of the American force was now driven from the field, and the steadfast 
militia of Colonel Blakeslie were exposed to a cross-fire. For half an 
hour, outflanked and outnumbered, the gallant little re^ment maintained 
the unequal contest; but at last, to avoid capture, it was ordered to 
retire. By this time the greater part of the Americans were flying in 
all directions, most of them going tnrough the forest to reach the Buffalo 
and Batavia road. A small number of the bolder spirits, among whom 
were Colonel Chapin, retired slowly along Niagara street, towards 
Buffalo. Among these was Lieutenant John Seely, a carpenter and 
joiner, who lived on the comer of Auburn and Niagara streets, and was 
lieutenant of a company of artilleir &t Black Rock. He had fought 
his piece on the brow of the hill, on what is now Breckinridge 
street, until he had but seven men and one horse left. Mounting the 
horse, which was harnessed to the giin, he brought it away with him, 
firing upon the enemy whenever occasion offered, plear where Mohawk 
street joins Niagara, was then a slough. Here Seely turned upon his 
foe. The gun was thrown off from its carriage by the discharge, but 
was quickly replaced, and taken to the vill^e. 

" Meanwhile a sailor named Johnson, £. D. Efner and a few others, 
went to a vessel, one of Perry's fleet, which lay beached on this side of the 
creek, near its mouth, and took off an iron 9-pounder, mounted upon a 
ship's truck, which they placed in Main street, opposite Church, and 
trained down Niagara street. Besides Johnson and Efner, the following 
persons assisted in serving this gun : Robert Kane, a mason by trade ; 
Captain Hull, father of Mrs. O. G. Steele, and Absalom Hull, his brother. 
At the third round, one of the truck wheels broke ; but they were load- 
ing it again, when Colonel Chapin, who thought resistance hopeless, and 
wished to give the people time for escape, rushed forward with a hand- 
kerchief, or as it is said, with a piece of his shirt, upon the end of his 
sword, and shouted, ' Don't fire that gun.' 

" ' I will fire it,' said Kane. * I'll cleave to the earth the first man who 
touches it/ 

" ' I've shown a flag of truce ;' replied Chapin, and started forward 
towards the enemy, vfho were by this time in the woods, upon what is 
now called Franklin Square. A parley took place, which resulted in Col- 
onel Chapin surrendering the town, stipulating for the protection of 
Erivate property ; a stipulation by which General Riall refused to be 
ound, when he learned that Chapin was not in command, and was, there- 
fore, without authority to treat with him. 

6o History of Buffalo. 

" It was now ten o'clock. The day was brifht, but cold. A heavy 
snow had fallen early in December, which stiu lingered in the woods, 
but the roads were bare. Most of the able-bodied men were with the 
troops. Through the long, dreary December night, the lonely women 
had heard the rattle of musketry, and at daybreak they gathered in 

f roups, listening with throbbing hearts to the cannonading at the Rock, 
resently, tidings of defeat flew through the town ; and soon upon every 
road, leading towards the Indian settlement, were little processions of 
terrified villagers, fleeing from the savage foe, into the * embrace of the 
wintry forest Who shall tell what they suffered — ^those houseless fiigi- 
tives, ignorant of the fate of father, husband, brother; by dav> skulking 
through the forest, and at night, creeping under the friendly roof <? 
some Indian hut ! 

" The British Indians had left the main column before it reached the 
village ; and, swarming through the woods, came into Main street, near 
Tupper. A house, which stora on the northwest comer of Tupper and 
Delaware streets, was the first burned. A man, named Dill, lived there. 
Judge Tupoer's house, on Main street, near the comer of Tupper, was 
the next. Opposite, above the residence of Mr. Andrew Rich, lived 
Samuel Helms ; he was slain while attempting to escape, and his house 
burned. Goine down the street, the tordi was applied to every building 
they found. Airs. Lovejoy was in her house, on the present site of the 
Phoenix. The night before, her husband had mounted his horse, and 
taking his trasty rifle, had gone to the Rock, to make such defence of 
his home as became a brave man. ' Henry,* * said the bold-hearted 
woman to her little son, * you have fought agamst the British ; you must 
run. They will take you prisoner. I am a woman; they will not harm 
me.' The lad flew into the woods. His light footfalls had not faded 
from the mother's ear when a score of Indians, wild with whisky and the 
rage of battle, msh into the dwelling and commence to sack it. Confi- 
dent in the great defence of her sacred sex, the careful housewife attempts 
to save her hard-earned treasures. Poor woman, thy sex is not sacred 
here ! A tomahawk crushes into her brain, and she falls dead upon the 
floor of her desecrated home. On the other side of the road stands the 
house of sturdy Mrs. St. John, able to defend her castle against a legion 
of enemies, whether savage or civilized. What magic she used, or by 
dint of what prowess, we know not, but the storm o! fire passes scathless 
over her roof. Two-thirds of the village is now in flames. The Bne^lish, 
with their cruel allies, weary with the long march and continued light- 
ing, retire to the Rock. 

'* In the night there is a fall of snow, and by daylight some oi the 
fugitives return, preferring their savage foe to the inhospitable forest. 
Mrs. St. John receives some of them, and gives them a cup of tea. A 
few have gathered at Dr. Chapin*s house, which is still standing, when 
the alarm is suddenly sounded, and once more the merciless invaders 
burst upon the remnant of the devoted village. The work of destrac- 
tion is soon completed, and many of the returned villagers are captured. 
But four houses remain — that ot Mrs. St John ; the jail ; the frame of a 
bam, which stood where stands Mr. Callender's house, and Rees' black- 
smith shop. ♦ ♦ » 

** The American General reported his loss — and, I suppose, his state- 

* Henry Lofejoy was tlien about twelve years old, and carried a musket, and took part to the 
best of his ability in the defence of Black Rock on the nth of July, of that year. 

Riotous Attack of Federal Volunteers. 6i 

ment is confined to the army — at thirtj killed, forty wounded, and sixty- 
nine taken prisoners. Among the slam were Major William C. Dudley, 
Adjutant Totman and Lieutenant-Colonel Boughton, who, I think, is the 
Sergeant Boughton who, the year before, escorted General Hall into the 
village, at the head of a detachment of the East Bloomfield Horse. 

"The new year dawned upon homes desolated by fire, and upon 
scattered families; but the uninflammable Buffalonians soon gave signs 
of life in the neighboring villages. The Gazette is printed in Williams- 
ville, where it remains until April 4th, 181 5. Seth Grosvenor and Eli Hart 
open their stores, and Walden and Potter their law oflBces, in Williams- 
ville. The embers of Pomeroy's house are not yet cold when he an- 
nounces that his Eagle hotel is to rise, t'hcenix-like, from its ashes. On 
April 5th, the Gazette announces that * Buffalo village, which once 
aaomed the shores of Erie, and was prostrated by the enemy, is now 
rising again.^ " 

It was near the close of the campaign of 18 12, that a riotous assault 
was made on Pomeroy's hotel, causing intense excitement and consider- 
able bloodshed. Among the troops assembled in Buffalo and vicinity in 
the last month of 1S12, were six companies called " Feders«l Volunteers,'" 
including two or three companies of " Irish Greens," from Albany and 
New York, and one company of •' Baltimore Blues," from that city. 
Throughout the war there appears to have been considerable feeling 
between the soldiers and the citizens. The soldiers, especially those 
from other localities, claimed that they were ill-treated by those whom they 
came to defend, while the citizens asserted that the soldiers were 
unreasonable in their demands. Some difficulty of this nature had 
arisen between a portion of the soldiers and Mr. Ralph M. Pomeroy, 
who kept the hotel at the comer of Main and Seneca streets. 
Pomeroy was an athletic and somewhat rough-spoken man. At the 
time in question Pomeroy and the Captain of an Albany company 
became involved in a dispute, which is said to have originated in a 
demand by the officer or some of his men for liquor and food. The 
Captain drew his sword and drove the hotel keeper down stairs in his 
own house. Thereupon Pomeroy expressed the rash wish that the 
British would kill the whole infernal crowd of them. The few soldiers 
that were present then started for camp, and ere long an armed mob of 
?• ^Itimore Blues" and "Irish Greens " came down Main street. The 
hotel guests, including several army officers, were at dinner. The first 
notice they received of the approach of the mob, was when an axe came 
hurtling through a window, landing directly on the dinner table. The 
riotous soldiers then rushed into the hotel, drove the inmates out and 
began the destruction of everything in the house. Liquors were poured 
down their throats, provisions devoured, windows broken out arid tables 
and chairs smashed. Colonel McClure, the commander of the men 
composing the mob, was present, but was powerless to control them. 
He mounted his horse and rode directly through the house, ordering 

62 History of Buffalo* 

them to disperse, but all to no purpose. He then ordered out two other 
companies under his command, and marched them in front of the hotel; 
but they would make no effort to quell the riot. 

Pomeroy ran and concealed himself in his bam. His wife's sister- 
in-law, who was in the house sick in bed, had to be carried upon it to a 
neighbor's house. 

As the rioters progressed in their work of destruction, they became 
more and more furious. The bedding was carried into the second story 
of the house and set on fire ; the destruction of the house was only averted 
by the courage of ** Hank " Johnson,* a white man who lived with the 
Cattaraugus Indians. He ascended a ladder and, although it was snatched 
from under him by the mob, managed to climb from it into a window and 
throw the burning articles into the street. At this juncture, some of the 
rioters saw Mr. Abel M. Grosvenor, who was a large man and somewhat 
resembled Pomeroy, passing on the street ; the cry was raised, ** Kill the 
d— d tory," and they chased him down the street until he fell ; just as they 
were about to kill him, some of them made the discovery that it was not 
Pomeroy. The mob then proposed the destruction of the "Federal 
printing office," as they designated the GoBttte office, and an era of whole- 
sale destruction seemed about to begin. 

But a power was interposed that the furious mob was compelled to 
recognize. Colonel Moses Porter, a veteran of thirty-six years service, 
whose command was encamped on Flint Hill, heard of what was occur- 
ring in the village. He promptly ordered out a detachment of artillery 
with a six-pound gun, and hurried them down Main street. The com- 
mand was halted just above the hotel and the gun brought to bear on 
the building. The Colonel then sent a lieutenant and a squad of men 
with drawn swords to clear the house. This was accomplished but not 
without some resistance on the part of the mob, resulting in several of 
them being killed and wounded. Some of them jumped from the win- 
dows, and others were cut while hanging to the window sills, by the 
swords of the artilleryists. The conquered mob than started for their 
encampment swearing vengeance cfti Porter and his men. The veteran 
officer stationed his cannon at the junction of Main and Niagara street 
and for some time awaited their coming ; but wiser counseb prevailed 
and order was restored. That no punishment whatever was inflicted 
upon these rioters, shows the prevailing lack of discipline at that time ; 

^ It was Hank Johoton of whom tbe foOowiag ttoiy is told by Lewb F. Alka, to wImmi It was 
related by Genenl Ptoittr. Alter one of the fiontler battles, woid vaaclMd Geoend Porter thai the 
Indians, who were M fai the fight bjr Johnson, were scalping tho dead British soldien. Johnson 
was bronght before the General» who said to him :•» 

<"l*his wni not do, Johnson. It b not i%ht to scalp these dead soldien ; it is haid on tho 
poor fellows, and yon rnnst stop it; itbtoohnrd.*^ 

Johnson's reply ended the interriow. Snid he, ** Well, GenenO^ it may be hard, bnt I want 
yon to remember that these are d— d hard times !" 

Tragic Incidents. 63 

that the GMHtt contained not a word directly relating to the monstrous 
outrage also shows that the proprietors considered themselves in either 
a delicate or a dangerous position, or both. 

Pomeroy left Buffalo and went to the Seneca village where he 
remained several days, and th^n closed his hotel for the winter, "in con- 
sequence of transactions too well known to need mentioning," as it was 
announced in his advertisement. Mr. Grosvenor, who came so near 
being sacrificed by the mob, went east soon after the event, and died 
within a few weeks. 

A tragic incident occurred at the Black Rock ferry on the Canada 
side, early m the war. A number of persons from Buffalo went to the ferry 
at Black Rock, for the purpose of crossing to Canada. In the compsmywere 
Dr. Jbsiah Trowbridge and Mr. Pomeroy. Mr. Brace, the ferryman, was 
averse to crossing on the cold December day, but Dn Trowbridge's 
business on the other side was urgent Although it was deemed some- 
what hazardous to visit the other side, Mr. Brace saw a white flag flying 
there, and he finally consented to allow his brother-in-law, Arden Merrill, 
to ferry the party over. As the boat approached the Canada shore, two 
or three sleighs filled with men were seen approaching from below. No 
sooner had the passengers landed than they were seized as prisoners, 
with the exception of Dr. Trowbridge and Mr. Pomeroy, who fled to 
the woods. The boat started to return, when the British fired into it, kill- 
ing Mr. Merrill ; his body was afterwards discovered under a flag of truce, 
stripped of boots and watch. One of the passengers was never heard of 
again ; one was taken prisoner and afterwards released at Halifax. Dr. 
Trowbridge and his companion made their way to Baxter's, six miles 
above the ferry, and there confiscated a boat against the remonstrances 
of the owner, who was not disposed to assist them in escaping, and arrived 
safely at Buffalo Creek. If there is any justification for this piece of 
work, it is difiicult to discover it ; it is a merciless enemy that does not 
respect a flag of truce. 

The 30th day of December, 18 13, was one of dire disaster and dis- 
may to the inhabitants of the village. The campaign that preceded the 
firing of the place, has been fully described, with the flight of the inhab- 
itants on that bleak winter day. Among the incidents directly connected 
¥rith the burning of the village, that which resulted in the preservation 
of the dwelling of Mrs. St. John and the massacre of Mrs. Lovejoy is, 
perhaps, most conspicuous. Nearly opposite the site of the Tifft House 
stood the new hotel that Mr. St. John had erected before his unfortunate 
death, which has already been mentioned. Mrs. St. John had leased this 
building, but it was not yet occupied. She had moved into a small house 
just north of it, near the corner of Main and Mohawk streets, which also 
belonged to her husband's estate. Just opposite was the residence of 
Asaph S. Bemis, a son-in-law of Mrs. St. John. Near Mr. Bemis* dwell- 

64 History of Buffalo. 

ing was the house of Joshua Lovejoy ; he was then away from home. 
Mrs. St. John, believing the enemy would not reach the village, had 
made no preparations for departure. Mr, Bemis, who was just recover- 
ing from sickness, had hitched up his team for the purpose of removing 
his wife from possible danger. Mrs. St. John requested him to take her 
six younger children with him, while she with her two older daughters 
remained to pack up her household goods. Mr. Bemis did so, with the 
understanding that he should take the children out a mile or two and 
then return for the three women and the goods. Before this arrange- 
ment could be carried out, however, the enemy were in the village. The 
Indians came down Main street considerably in advance of the troops, 
which were drawn up near the corner of Morgan, Mohawk and Niagara 
streets, where Samuel Edsall's tannery then stood. Some of the British 
officers went ahead and stove in the heads of liquor casks, that the 
Indians might not become too drunk for their work, or too fiendish in 
their deeds. John Lay* and Elj Hart then kept a store on Main street^ 
between Swan and Erie ; one of them went into his cellar before the 
Indians reached it, and smashed in several hogsheads of spirits, to pre- 
vent the savages from drinking it. It is apparent, however, that the 
Indians were licensed to follow their own inclinations in the destruction 
of the village. 

Half a score of Indians now came running toward Mrs. St. John's 
house. Although she waved a table cloth as a flag of truce, they burst 
into the house and began plundering the trunks that had been packed. 
Four squaws in the party immediately secured a looking-glass and, yrith 
the instinct usually credited to the sex, stood grinning delightedly at the 
reflection of their unprepossessing faces. One of the ladies discovered 
that one Indian took no part in the plundering, and that he could talk a 
little English. She asked what would be done with them. " We not 
hurt you," he replied. " You be prisoner to the squaws. Perhaps they 
take you to the Colonel." 

This answer presented a brighter prospect than the ladies had 
expected, and they immediately acquiesced in it. The Indian spoke to 
the squaws and they started off with their prisoners, down Mohawk to 
the comer of Niagara street, where the troops were still stationed. 
There the prisoners were taken before a British officer, supposed to have 
been Colonel Elliott, then in command of the Indians. Mrs. St. John 
informed him of her situation as a widow who had recently lost her 
husband and eldest son by a sad calamity, with a large family of children 
depending upon her, and besought his protection. 

* Mr. Lay was taken prisoner that night and taken to Montreal. The last of the following 
March he was exchanged with others at Greenbush, opposite Albany. Mr. Lay was long a prominent 
business man of Bn£falo, and traveled quite extensively in Europe after he retired from active life. 
One of his sons is the inventor of the well-known Lay torpedo boat 

Tragic Incidents. 65 

" Well, what can I do for you ?" asked the oflBccr ; ''shall I take you 
to Canada?" 

Mrs. St. John decidedly objected to this, but implored the oflBcer to 
save her house and not allow it to be burned and plundered. After a 
little hesitation he assented and ordered two soldiers of the Royal Scots 
to accompany the ladies home and see that their house was not burned. 
They did so and remained on guard until the troops left in the aiternoon. 

Soon after the ladies returned to their home, they saw Mrs. Lovejoy 
across the street engaged in an altercation with an Indian over a shawl 
which he was trying to pull from her hands. One of the St. John girls 
ran out and called to Mrs. Lovejoy to let the Indian have the shawl and 
come over to their house where she would have the protection of the 
guard ; she did not comply. 

The flames soon began to burst from the houses in the main portion 
of the village in the vicinity of Main and Seneca streets, the torch being 
applied by a lieutenant and a squad of men. 

A little later the St. John ladies were attracted to their windows by 
another disturbance across the street. Some Indians w^re again making 
an effort to enter Mrs. Lovejoy 's dwelling, while she stood in the door- 
way barring their entrance. Suddenly a savage raised his knife, stabbed 
the woman to the heart and she fell upon the threshold. Her body was 
dragged into the yard, where it lay until after the departure of the 
troops in the afternoon, when Ebenezer Walden and the St. John girls 
carried it into the house and placed it on the bed. When the destruction 
of the village was completed on the ist of January, the body of Mrs. 
Lovejoy was burned in her house. 

It was on the '' Guide-Board '' road (which ran near the present line 
of North street) that Alfred Hodge was fleeing from the savages ; he 
found himself unable to outstrip his pursuers and jumped over the fence 
where he was for a moment hid from view by a turn in the road, near 
the crossing of Delaware street. Hodge laid down behind a log and 
laid his rifle across it, prepared to sell his life as dearly as possible, if he 
was discovered. When the Indians came up, two of them stopped in 
the road but a short distance from him and looked about in every 
direction for their intended victim ; but they failed to discover him. 
The Indians stood in range at one time and Hodge thought he could 
disable both at one shot, but they changed their position before he could 
get his aim. These two and other Indians who were in the vicinity, 
fired several shots at the crowd of fugitives that filed up Main street 
early in the day, wounding one or more and causing the throng to 
redouble their efforts to escape. 

Dr. Chapin left for the field in the morning and told his two little 
girls, one eleven and the other nine years of age, to go to his farm in 
Hamburg, ten miles distant. Their only protector was to be Hiram 

66 History of Buffalo. 

Pratt, son of Samuel Pratt, who was but thirteen years old, then living 
in Dr. Chapin's family. The three children set out in the snow. When 
they arrived at the Pratt homestead, Mary Pratt was induced to accom. 
pany them. At Smoke's creek the little party was overtaken by the 
Pratt family in a wagon; and Mary was taken on boafd; but Hiram 
Pratt and the two Chapin girls insisted on completing their long and 
trying journey on foot, and finally reached their destination in safety.* 

Before leaving the village, Captain Hull, the silversmith, packed his 
small stock of valuables in a pillow case. While waiting for some means 
of transporting his effects to a place of safety, a man came along on 
horseback. At Mr. Hull's request he consented to take charge of the 
valuables ; accordingly, the pillow^-case was fastened to the horn of the 
saddle. The stranger took such excellent care of the goods that their 
owner never saw them again. 

The family of Samuel Pratt were equally unfortunate with their 
silverware, though in a different way. It had been packed up, but when 
they drove away in their wagon it was forgotten. After going a short 
distance, a little girl whom Mrs. Pratt was bringing up, proposed going 
back for the silver. This was forbidden by Mrs. Pratt; nevertheless, 
the girl climbed out of the rear end of the wagon unobserved, ran back, 
secured the silver, and was never again seen by the family. 

It was during the fighting at Black Rock that Samuel Wilkeson, 
who was then in the ranks of Colonel McMahon's Chautauqua county 
regiment, was loading and firing as fast as possible, after the field was 
nearly deserted by his comrades. While thus busily engaged, his atten- 
tion was attracted to a " small quiet man " near by, who was apparently 
endeavoring to load and fire faster than Wilkeson could. The small, 
quiet man soon looked around and exclaimed, '' Why, we are all alone!" 
Wilkeson looked about him and made the same discovery ; all but a 
very few of their comrades were in full retreat The man whose 
acquaintance Mr. Wilkeson thus made for the first, was Ebenezer Walden ; 
they were both subsequently Presiding Judges of Erie county. 

While retreating up Main street, Job Hoysington, whose name has 
passed into history, said to his retreating comrades that he would have 

* Notwithstanding the depressing gloom of these dark days of trouble, Cupid was busy as ever 
with his arrows, and on one occasion the altar of Hymen was reared in the hospitable shelter of the 
old Pratt mansion. It was while the pillage of Buffalo was going on, and in a most anceremonioiis 
manner, that Mr. Augnstus C. Fox left a British ofHoer m the cellar of Juba Storrs & Co.'s store. 
Emerging from the building, the young man mounted a horse and, with other belated fugitives, took 
rapid flight from the village. Overtaking a party encumbered with an extra conveyance, he bought 
it, with the necessary harness, on the spot It was a " pung/' a simple species of vehicle, extem- 
porized by fastening a crockery crate on a pair of sled mnneis. Speeding on in this primitive char- 
iot, he overtook the Pratt family and volunteered to relieve them of two individuals who formed 
part of their load. One of these was Miss Esther Pratt, then a charming young Miss. Young. Fox 
saved his life in the retreat, but lost his heart, and the consequence was a wedding, which peaceful 
event took place the same day that peace was announced between the waning nations. — LeUkwortiCs 
History of the Pratt Family. 

Incidents of the Flight from Buffalo. 67 

one more shot at the redskins, and in spite of their warnings, waited for 
that purpose. Nothing more was seen or heard of Job Hoysington 
until the snow disappeared in the spring, when his body was found on 
North street. A bullet had passed through his head and marks of a 
tomahawk were found on his skull. His empty rifle lay by his side, a 
silent witness that he had had his last shot at the Indians. 

William Hodge, Sr., proprietor of the "brick tavern on the hill," would 
not entertain the ideathatthe Americans would be defeated, until he saw 
the militia hurrying past his house ; he then began to realize that it was 
about time to prepare for removal and ordered his ox team hitched up. 
After making some final arrangements in the house and waiting 
impatiently for the arrival of the team at the door, Mr. Hodge came 
out only to make the discovery that the hired man had concluded that 
too much valuable time would be lost to him in the work of hitching 
up the oxen and had left for good by his own more rapid means of loco- 
motion. Self-preserVation was a ruling characteristic then, as well as 
now. Mr. Hodge persuaded the driver of an army-wagon to halt at his 
door a moment while the household goods were thrown in, with some 
bedding and provisions, followed by the family, and thus they were sent 
away, Mr. Hodge then yoked his oxen, piled into the cart as many of 
the remaining household articles as it would hold and followed after 
the army wagon. When Mr. Hodge returned the following day, even 
the liquor in his cellar was undisturbed ; but his house was burned to 
the ground on the second day after. 

All day on the 30th the roads leading through Williamsville and 
the Hamburg road — indeed, every road and pathway leading from the 
village, were thronged with a hurrying crowd of men, women and 
children, on foot and in a motley procession of vehicles — squads of 
soldiers, families in sleighs and wagons, women driving ox carts laden 
with portions of their household effects, mounted cavalrymen, wearied 
women on foot with children in their aims — all inspired with the one 
idea of escaping from a merciless foe. " In many instances half-clad 
children, the wounded, the aged and infirm, were wading through snow, 
bands of able-bodied men often passing them, pitiless and unobserving, 
absorbed in deep concern for their own individual and especial safety. 
Here and there along the road, were feeble attempts to rally and stand ; 
some resolute individuals would propose it and partially succeed ; but 
on would come the idle rumor that the invaders were pushing their 
conquests, and the feeble barriers would give way, as does the moment- 
ary deposit in flood tide, and on, on would sweep the strong current of 
dismay, rout and flight'** Mrs. Mather, one of the earliest residents 
of Buffalo, said that when she and her daughters started from the village 
on foot a little before daylight, "it was very dark; we could hear from 

* Tarner's History of the Holland Purchase. 

68 History of Buffalo. 

Black Rock the incessant roar of musketry, and see flashes of light 
rising above the intervening forest. When daylight came, the Buffalo 
road presented a sad spectacle of sudden flight, misery and destitution." 

While selfishness was the rule in this wild rout, few giving thought 
to any one beyond their own families, there were some commendable excep- 
tions. A farmer from Nhmburg, with a load of cheese, met the fleeing 
crowd and immediately threw his precious cargo into the road, filled 
his sleigh with women and children and carried them to his own home. 
Job Hoysington's wife waited long and patiently at their home, comer 
of Main and Utica streets, for her husband to return ; finally she was 
compelled to start on foot with her children. Two cavalrymen over- 
took her and lifted two of the children to their saddles and rode away 
with them towards safety. Weeks afterwards one of them was found in 
Clarence and one in Genesee county. Families became separated and in 
some instances, were not united for weeks. It was a smaller " Bull Run," 
participated in by women and children. 

The first house burned stood on the northwest corner of Tupper and 
Delaware streets ; a man named Dill occupied it. Judge Tupper's house 
on Main street was the next one destroyed. 

The following named residents of the village were captured by the 
enemy: Cyrenius Chapin, John Lay, Charles C. Wells, William Wil- 
ber, Rufus Botsford, Joseph D. Hoyt, Robert Keene, Timothy Strong, 
Benjamin Hodge, Jr., Daniel Baxter and Captain R. Harmon. 

During the night of the 31st, after a day of silence and desolation 
at the ruined village there was a fall of snow and early the next morn- 
ing a few of the fugitives returned to the ruins of Buffalo ; the desola- 
tion and possible danger there seeming less inhospitable than the 
winter forest. Prowling thieves hung about the ruins until driven 
away by returning families, and carried off whatever they found that 
was valuable. 

Dr. Chapin's house was one of the four dwellings that had thus far 
escaped the flames. Some of those who returned gathered at the Doc- 
tor's house and others found hospitable shelter at Mrs. St. John's dwell- 
ing. Suddenly a detachment of the enemy appeared and mercilessly 
fired the remaining buildings, with the exceptions heretofore noted — Mrs. 
St. John's cottage, the stone jail, which they could not bum, Reese's 
blacksmith shop and the frame of a bam. When the officer in command 
of the squad that completed the work of destraction, approached Mrs. 
St. John's home, she and her daughters begged him 10 not destroy the 
large hotel. The officer thereupon drew from his pocket an order com- 
manding him to bum every building except " the one occupied by an old 
woman and two girls." The hotel was then fired. It is little wonder 
that the officer felt impelled to show some higher authority for his acts, 
than his own inclination. 

Burning of Hodge's Tavern. 69 

On the day previous (the 31st) Ebenezer Walden had entered Mrs. 
Lovejoy's house and laid the murdered woman, attired in the black silk 
dre^ in which she was killed, on the bare cords of a bedstead. The 
presence of death itself made no difference to the invaders, they made a 
funeral pyre of the dwelling ! 

As the detachment of the enemy was about to depart, one of the 
soldiers informed the commandant that public stores were secreted at 
Hodge's " tavern on the hill." A squad of horsemen were immediately 
dispatched to bum it. Benjamin Hodge, Sr., was there with Mr. Keep, 
the blacksmith, at Cold Spring. They both started to run when the 
horsemen approached, and the sergeant ordered them to halt. Hodge 
stopped, but Keep continued to run a short distance, when he was shot 
and killed. 

The village merchants had stored quite a large quantity of their 
goods at the tavern, and when these were discovered by the sergeant, 
although assured that it was not public property, he ordered the building 
set on fire. A few moments later, while the officer was filling his 
canteen from a cask of old Jamaica that he had discovered after the 
building was fired, the cry was raised, '^The Yankees are coming!" 
The British soldiers hurriedly mounted and rode away. Adjutant 
Tottman, in command of some mounted Canadian volunteers, rode up. 
The adjutant galloped ahead to the side of the rearmost of the retreating 
horsemen, when he was instantly shot. Tottman's men soon after 
discovered a half-breed Indian setting fire to William Hodge's barn ; he 
was captured, taken to Newstead and killed. 

William Hodge returned from Harris Hill just behind Tottman and 
his men, and saw that his tavern, which he had hoped would be spared 
the flames, was in ashes. That was the last building burned.* When 
the torch was applied to Buffalo, the hamlet at Black Rock was also 
burned, not a single building being left. 

It is difficult at this day to realize the paralyzing effect that such a 
disaster as we have detailed, must have produced upon the people. In 
very many cases, nothing whatever was left them but the blackened 
ground whereon they had made their homes, and, what was still more 
saddening, from many of those homes some member had gone out to 

* *' The Bnffaloniuis slain were Job Hoysington, a carpenter and joiner, who lived on Church 
street, near Franklin ; John Triskett, who cannot be identified ; John Roop, father of Heory Roop, 
a teamster, of Dntch descent, but American birth, who lived on Main street above Tapper, and was 
shoe while trying to escape ; Samnel Helms, a German and an old bachelor, who deserves to be 
icmembered by the epicures of Buffalo, as the first market gardener in the place ; he raised the first 
lettuce, which he used to carry in a basket on hb head, selling it from door to door ; he it was, too, 
who dug the ditches to drain the morass south of the Terrace. N. D. Keep was killed by a British 
officer near Cold Spring. James Nesbit and Myers I can find no trace of. The last was Rob- 
ert Franklin, an aged negro, very black, who lived in a log hut on Niagara, opposite Jersey street. 
Whether the oU negro died defending his home, I know not. His lifeless body was found near his 
house, and k»Dg remained mkhmML^-^Exirui /rvm WilHam Dershnwut^s Paper, 

70 History of Buffalo. 

defend his hearthstone and would return no more. That under ^uch 
discouragements those pioneers returned at all to build again the founda^ 
tions of a city, is sufficient honor for them and their descendants. 

Before the smoke had ceased to rise from the ruins of Buffalo, the 
dead bodies left upon the field were collected and laid out in ghastly 
array in the blacksmith shop ; they were all frozen stiff, most of them 
had been stripped by the enemy, and scalped. Those belonging in the 
vicinity were taken away by their friends and the others were laid in one 
large grave in the old burying ground on Franklin Square. 

Less than one week later, on the 6th of January, William Hodge 
brought his family back ; that was the first family to return, and Ralph 
M. Pomeroy came immediately afterwards. William Hodge immediately 
rebuilt his dwelling and Mr. Pomeroy his hotel. Soldiers were stationed 
in the village and a feeling of comparative safety soon settled down upon 
the frontier. A few other citizens came back and fitted up temporary 
shelters for themselves and families, but there was no general return until 
the following spring. Twice during the winter small detachments of 
the enemy crossed the river, but they were driven back by the soldiers 
then stationed there, without much fighting. Most of the people who 
returned had little to live on except what was issued to them from the 
commissary department of the army. There would have been much 
suffering, but for the help of about $50,000 voted by the Legislature and 
some contributions from other localities ; with this and aid from the 
commissary, those who remained on the frontier passed the remainder of 
the gloomy winter. 

On the 4th of June, 18 14, five soldiers were brought into Buffalo to 
be shot for desertion. The execution took place near what is now the 
corner of Maryland and Sixth streets, and was long remembered as a 
strikingly tragic scene. The unfortunate victims of martial law were 
made to kneel upon the ground, their eyes bandaged and each with his 
coffin in front and an open grave behind him. Twenty paces in front of 
them a platoon of men were drawn up as the executioners. The entire 
army was then formed on three sides of a hollow square to witness the 
execution. The artillery stood by their guns with lighted matches, to 
suppress any possible opposing demonstration, and Generals Scott, 
Brown, and Ripley overlooked the scene from their horses. 

When the firing squad had poured the contents of their muskets upon 
the victims, four of the five men fell beside their coffins, while one, a young 
man of twenty-onie, sprang to his feet, wrenched the cords from his arms 
and then tore the bandage from his eyes. Two soldiers ad vanced to fire 
upon him when he, supposing his last moment on earth had arrived, fell 
fainting to the ground. He was carried away and his hfe spared. What- 
ever was the reason for the action, the muskets of those soldiers who had 
received orders to fire at him, were loaded with blank cartridges. 

Farmer's Brother and the Chippewa. 71 

Another incident that seems to be worthy of preservation, occurred at 
Buffalo on the 31st of July, 1814. On that day a Chippewa Indian who 
claimed to be a deserter, came across the river. His story was not fully 
credited by the Senecas, but they permitted him to remain among them 
and invited him to freely share the contents of a bottle of whisky. Under 
the influence of the liquor, the Senecas began relating their deeds of valor 
in the war, and boasting of the number of red-coats and British Indians they 
had slain at the battle of Chippewa. The visitor, heedless of the part he 
was attempting to play, also began boasting of the number of his victims, 
and held up his fingers to indicate how many Yankees and Yankee Indians 
he had killed, mentioning among them the noted chief and friend of 
Farmer's Brother, " Twenty Canoes." Farmer's Brother was then at the 
bedside of Captain Worth, of General Scott's staff, who was lying at Lan- 
doii's tavern recovering from a wound received at Lundy's Lane, and 
for whom the Indian chief had formed a strong friendship. When the 
Chippewa Indian boasted that he had killed " Twenty Canoes," the 
Senecas at once denounced him as a spy. The altercation that followed 
reached the ears of Farmer's Brother and he came out of the tavern 
and inquired the cause. When he was informed of the facts, he grasped 
his war club, walked up to the Chippewa and felled him to the earth. 
For a moment the Indian lay stunned and then sprang up and bounded 
away, the blood streaming down his face. The Senecas cried out : — 

"Ho, coward! Dare not stay and be punished. Coward!" The 
Chippewa stopped and then slowly retraced his steps, drew his blanket 
over his head and laid down beside the wall of a burned building. A 
rifle was handed to Farmer's Brother, who walked to the side of the spy 
and said : — 

"Here are my rifle, my tomahawk and my scalping knife; by which 
will you die ?" 

The Indian chose the rifle. The Chief then asked him where he 
preferred to be shot. The victim placed his hand on his heart, upon 
which Farmer's Brother held the muzzle of the rifle at that point and 
fired. Four young Senecas carried the body to the edge of the wood 
some distance east of Main street and there left it.* This account is 
condensed from " Johnson's History of Erie County " ; other versions of 
the same event have been given by other writers. The execution of the 
Indian occurred about in front of the site of Barnum, Son & Co.'s store, 
on Main street. 

* In an autobiographical sketch by Mr. Orlando Allen, he gives a somewhat different version 
of this incident, as it was related to him by an eye-witness. He states that the spy was made to lie 
down, when Farmer's Brother took the loaded gun and proceeded to address tlie culprit upon the 
enormity of his offense, after which he said, ** You are about to die the death of a dog ; I am going 
to kill yon now,*' and immediately fired, shooting the Indian through the head. Mr. Allen found a 
skull in the summer of 1820, on a clear grass plat in the woods not far from where Seneca street is 
crossed by Chicago street, which he thought was that of the Indian spy. It had a bullet hole in it 
and a cat apparently made by a tomahawk. The skull was examined by a number of old settlers, 
who ooncnrred in the opinion that it was the remains of the Chippewa spy. 

72 History of Buffalo. 

The departure of the enemy from the American shore on the first 
day of the year 1814, had left a scene of desolation that would have 
filled with despair any heart less self-reliant and hopeful than those of 
the pioneers of Erie county. A hundred houses, with numerous other 
buildings, most of which were scattered along Main street from Goodell 
street to the site of the Mansion House, had been reduced to ashes, and 
more then five hundred people left homeless in midwinter. Where 
before that tragic event stood a thriving village, bearing all the evidences 
of a prolnising future, was left a scene of devastation and ruin where not 
a living thing could be seen.* 

A gentleman writing to his friend in Oneida county gave the 
following description of the devastated frontier, which was published in 
the Buffalo Gazttu of February i, 18 14: — 

" I have visited the smokinc" ruins of the once pleasant, delightful 
and flourishing village of Buffsuo. Black Rock, Manchester, Lewiston 
and the whole frontier, which were, not long since, enjoyed by hundreds 
of families, now present a scene of desolation ; all swept \>y the besom of 
destruction. The wretched tenants of this whole frontier have been 
driven from their homes in the severity of winter ; many, in their haste 
to snatch their wives and children from the tomahawk and scalping 
knife, were enabled to preserve but little of their effects from the flames; 
and many, whose houses were not burned by the enemy, after having 
abandoned their dwellings to escape the ravages of their foe, returning 
after the alarm was over, found that their effects were plundered by the 
villains who prowl about the deserted country, too cowardly to face an 
enemy of inferior force, and base enough to rob their neighbors of the 
property the enemy had spared. It would make your heart ache to see 
the women and children of the country fleeing from their homes and 
firesides, to encounter the wintry blast, and all the miseries of a depriva- 
tion of all the necessaries and comforts of life." * * 

Harris Hill, or Harris' Tavern, about fourteen miles from Buffalo, 
near Williamsville, was made a sort of headquarters for the business 
men who had been burned out. The Gazette informs us that Seth Gros- 
venor had removed from the " former flourishing village of Buffalo^ to 
Harris' Tavern." H. B. Potter opened his office there, Eli Hart 
removed his goods to Williamsville, where lEbenezer Walden also opened 
his office. Root & Boardman also located " one door east of Harris' 
Tavern, and fourteen miles from the ruins of Buffalo/' 

On the 25th of January, under date of " Buffalo Ruins," J. Root 
advertised in the Gazette as follows : — 

"Stolen from the subscriber, two fat shoats, supposed to weifi^h 
about seventy pounds each. They were taken from the ruins of the 
village of Buffalo on the 12th or 13th, by some of the cowardly, light- 
fingered iron-mongers, or some other savages," etc. 

* James Sloan and Samuel Wilkeson came down the lake shore a few days after the Tillage was 
burned, and "the only living thing they saw between Pratt's Ferry on the creek, and Cold Spring, 
was a cat roaming disconsolate among the charred mins." 

Buffalo ik the Spring of 1814. 73 

R. B. Heacock also announced the loss of twenty or thirty grind- 
stones by the heartless thieves. 

It was but a short time after the burning of the village that, in spite 
of the fact that the war was not yet ended and that it was midwinter, 
some of the resolute pioneers returned and b^an the work of rebuilding 
their ruined homes. On the 6th of January, just a week after the con- 
flagration, as before stated, William Hodge returned, bringing his family 
with him. About the same time Ralph M. Pomeroy also returned and 
began immediately the erection of his hotel. In the GazitU of February 
22d, Pomeray made the following quaint announcement: — 

" Buffalo Phcenix.— R. M. Pomeroy begs leave to ipform the puWip, 
and his old customers in particular, that be is again erecting his tavern 
among the ri^ins of Buffalo. He calculates by the nrst of March to be pre- 
pared to re<^ve and wait on company." [Then follows a call (or the pay- 
ment of what 16 due him.] '* Come on then, men of New York ; let 00^ 
snow or r^ii. deter yovi; come in companie6, haU companicfs^ paii[s or 
singly : ricb to the place ii the distance be loo far, and pay me dollar^ 
halMollars, shillings and sixpennys." 

The latter half of the winter of 1813- 14 was a time of gre^t priva^ 
tion, distren^ ^d fev auBpng; thosjB who 1^. been rendered homeless. 
The suffering would have been greatly a^gpkvated but for the timely 
appropriation of about $50,000 beiore referred to, and the libei:al contrv 
butions from other public and private sources. Rumors of impending 
night attacks by the enemy were often heard by the settlers who ba4 
returned to E^uffalo, and several times their goods were packed up fo; 
immediate removal. 

With the opening of spring, however, Buffalo put on new life. 
More of the former residents returned, and with the advent of the army 
in April, a large trade sprang up and a feeling of comparative safety 
animated the people. In place of the fonner buildings, many board! 
shanties were erected along Main and Pearl streets. One stood on the 
site of the First Presbyterian churpb^ and another where St Paul's npw 
stands. Money was scattered freely by the soldiers, and business 4ouir- 
ished ; high prices were received for almost all kinds of npierchandise and 

Charles Townsend, S. Tupper, Ebenezer Walden, Jonas Harrison, 
H. B. Potter, S. Grosvenor, Joseph Landon and Ebenezer Johnson were 
appointed a Committee of Investigation to apppraise losses by the war. 
Sufferers were notified to meet at the house of A. P. Harris, Mojaday, 
March 7th, and prove their losses. The Gazette of April 5th, said : — 

" Buffalo village which once adorned the shores of Erie and was 
prostrated by the enemy, is now rising again ; several buildings are 
already raised and made habitable; contracts for twenty or thirty 
more are made and many of them are in considerable forwardness. A 
brick company has been organized by an association of most enterprising 
and public-spirited citizens, with sufficient capital for the purpose of 

74 History of Buffalo. 

rendering the price of brick so reasonable that the principal streets may 
be built up of that article. All that is required to re-establish Buffalo in 
its former prosperity, are ample remuneration from government, and 
peace ; peace, it not obtained by negotiation, must be obtained by a vig- 
orous prosecution of the war. Bu&lo has its charms — the situation, the 
prospect and the general health of the inhabitants, to which we may add 
the activity and enterprise of the trade, the public spirit; of the citizens 
and the state of sbciety, all conspire to render it a chosen spot for the 
man of business or pleasure." 

Samuel Wilkeson, who had already done valiant service in the army 
and was destined to make himself one of the foremost men of the place, 
returned to Buffalo in April, 1814. He was then but thirty-one years 
old. He put up a small building one door from the comer of Niagara 
street on Main street, in which he began business. This dwelling he 
erected on the north side of Main street.* 

The directors of the first brickyard company, to which reference has 
been made, were Ebenezer Walden, Charles Townsend, S. Tuppcr, Ben- 
jamin Caryl and S. Grosvenor. In April they called for laborers to work 
in the yard. 

Holden Allen, father of Captain Levi Allen, who now lives in Buffalo, 
leased the cottage of Mrs. St. John, very siaon after the burning. He 
then erected about two hundred feet of rough shanties, extending along 
southward from the cottage, without floors and fitted with rude bunks 
filled with straw. In these temporary quarters, assisted by his wife, he 
accommodated to the best of his ability, the people who desired to stop 
on the site of the burned village. 

April 25th, Eli Hart had opened near his old stand, and Seth Gros- 
venor announced that he had " once more established himself in Buffalo 
in a new house where the printing office of the Salisburys stood,"* where 
he offered dry goods. H. B. Potter came back and located in the house 
of F. Millen Dr. Ebenezer Johnson returned in April. 

The Gazette of May 3d, stated that the " greatest activity and enter- 
prise continues in Buffalo in building up and improving the place." The 
county clerk's office was removed to Miller's house and the collector's 
office brought from Batavia. 

May loth, the Gazette announced that the postoffice would be for 
the present at Judge Granger's house, but " in a short time it will be 
removed to the village." 

By the 20th of the month there were twenty-thred houses built, most 
of which were occupied by families; three taverns were in operation, 
four stores, twelve grocers and other shops, three offices and thirty huts 
and shanties. 

General Scott arrived on the frontier on t&e loth of April ; and 
towards the last of May made his headquarters at Buffalo, where a large 

* See biography in subsequent pages. 

Peace Declared — General Retoicing. 75 

force of the army gathered and went into camp amid the ruins, giving a 
still greater impetus to trade. 

In the Gazette of June 7th, notice was given that the Judges of the 
Court of Common Pleas had appointed the house of John Brunson as the 
temporary court house. This building stood where the Acatdemy of 
Music is now located. It was a wooden tavern and was afterwards known 
as the Farmer's Hotel. 

During the month of June, Andrews & Hopkins establishd the cabi- 
net-making business at the house ot Mrs. Adkins, and Juba Storrs opened 
his store in the same house. Mrs. Adkins* dwelling must have been 
either a commodious one, or uncomfortably crowded. 



Peace — General Rejoicing over the Event — Departure of the Army from Buffalo — The Seiond 
Newspaper — Prominent Arrivals — Rebuilding of the Village — Revival of Business — 
Opening of the Courts— Brickyard Established — A Period of '* Hard Times"— The Canal 
Project — Incorporation of the Village — New Ordinances Passed — Last Relic of Slavery — 
Population in 1820 — The Harbor Project — How the Work was Done — The Terminus of 
the Canal — Rivalry between Black Rock and Buffalo — Final Settlement of the Question in 
Favor of Buffalo— Millard Fillmore — Completion of the Canal— The Village in 1825 — 
The Buffalo Hydraulic Company — Jubilee Water Works — A Disastrous Fire — A Young 
City— List of Purchasers of Lots of the Holland Company. 

WITH the restoration of peace, the news of which reached Western 
New York early in 181 5, the history of what may properly be 
called the second BufFalo should begin, although previous to that 
time and since the burning of the first village, considerable had been 
done towards re-building the place. 

The brilliant sortie planned and executed by General Porter and his 
followers, and the consequent fall of Fort Erie on the 17th of September, 
1814, virtually ended the war on the Niagara frontier; and when in the 
following January, the news of the signing of the treaty of Ghent reached 
Buffalo, a general shout of congratulation and thankfulness went up on 
all sides. Emigration westward received a new impetus and Buffalo 
shared largely in the results. The troops that had been stationed in the 
vicinity were withdrawn, the last of them taking their departure during 
the night of July 2d, and little was left but the scars of battle and fire to 
indicate that war with all its terrors and hardships, had so recently 

76 History of Buffalo, 

swept over the frontier. A salute was fired at Black Rock upon the 
restoration of peace, and there was an era of general rejoicing. General 
Porter, who had borne so conspicuous a part in the war, was banqueted 
at Canandaig^a and Batavia, and enthusiastic compliments were show- 
ered upon him by the press and people.* Buffalo began to rise from its 
ashes more rapidly. 

The second newspaper was established in April, and in the columns 
of that and the Gazette were chronicled many new business enterprises 
and numerous arrivals of men who afterwards became prominent in busi- 
ness and political life. Dr. John E. Marshall came from Chautauqua 
county and settled in Buffalo in the spring of 1815. He soon occupied 
a foremost position in the ranks of her citizens. He first located at the 
house of Jonas Harrison. In March, Dr. Trowbridge informed the public 
that he had taken the house formerly occupied by E. Hart. Townsend & 
Coit removed that month to " their old stand next north of S. & S. K. 
Grosvenor." Charles D. Eaton opened a general store in April. Under- 
hill & Dann began business opposite the Grosvenors, and Vosburgli & 
Barron started the saddlery business opposite '' the printing office." 

The Gazette of April 17th, announces that Albert H. Tracy had 
opened an office over E. Hart & Co.'s brick store.f 

Ralph Plumb opened a general store in Buffalo in June, 181 5, and 
in July the first milliner made her appearance in the person of Mrs. 
Kagle. John Wagstaff opened the first tinware establishment in August, 
"a few rods east of E. Hart & Co." 

In July, 181 5, the Gazette boasted that there were as many houses 
erected in Buffalo, or in process of erection, as were burned a year and 
a half before. Building was also beg^n with vigor at the future rival 
of Buffalo— Black Rock. 

A pottery was established in 1815, near Cold Spring, by Armond 
Parsons, and the first tannery was started the same year in that vicinity, 
by Jacob Morrison. 

*Geneiml Porter hat been characterized as " the first distinguished leader of American yolim- 
tcers against a disciplined foe." In recognition of his services he was tendered the position of Com- 
mander-in-Chief of the United States Army at the close of the war, by President Madison, but 
declined. He is cerUinly entitled to rank as a great military commander, and he was no lets hon- 
ored and successful in civil life. He was twice elected to Congiess and was made Secretary of War 
by President Adams in 1828, the first cabinet officer in Western New York. He was also Secretary 
of State in 1 81 5, and in 1816 was made one of the Commissioners to determine the boundary 
between the United States and the British Possessions. General Porter died at his residence at 
Niagara Falls, on the doth of March, 1844, at the age of seventy-two years. 

t Mr. Tracy was then a young lawyer only twenty-two years old, •* tall, stimight, vigorous and 
brilliant in intellect, and thoroughly cultured. " He soon became one of the most prominent and suc- 
cessful politicians in the State ; was elected to Congress in 1818, by a heavy majority, when he was only 
twenty-five years old, and was re-elected in 1820. A somewhat celebrated political circle consisted 
of Mr. Tracy, Dr. Marshall, James Sheldon and a few others, who wielded oonsidermble power and 
werc»known as the " Kremlin Junta " Mr. Tracy was elected State Senator in the fall of 1829, by 
the Anti-Masons ; was re-elected in 1833, and retired from public life the following year, at the age 
of forty-four. He died September 19, 1859. 

The Cold Summer— Hard Times. ^^ 

On the 20th of April the courts were ordered to be held at the 
house of Gilman Folsom, *' at present occupied by Moses Baker & Co., 
in the village of Buffalo." This house stood on the east side of Main 
street, between Mohawk and Genesee streets. There all courts were 
held until the new court house was finished late in the following year. 
The new structure was erected under an act of Legislature passed on 
the 17th of April, 1816, by which the State loaned to the county $5 000 ; 
Joseph Landon, Samuel Tupper and Jonas Williams were the commis- 
sioners named to superintend the construction of the new edifice. The 
village authorities resolved to continue Washington street directly 
through the circle on which the first court house stood ; this was done 
and the county acquired title to the portion of it left on both sides of 
the street. The new court house was built on the part of the block 
lying east of Washington street, between Batavia and Clinton streets. 
In the Gazette oi September 24, 18 16, the following announcement was 
printed : — 

" The walls of the court house, which was commenced in the early 
part of the season, are erected ; we learn that the carpenter and joinei 
work of the building are progressing. If the house is finished in the 
style it has commenced, it will be an ornament to the village ; uniting 
elegance with durability, and will be creditable to the judgment and 
taste of the commissioners.*' 

The summer of 1816 is remembered to this day as ''the cold sum- 
mer." Its eflfects were seriously felt in Buffalo, through the failure of 
crops in the surrounding towns. The trade that had fallen off largely 
with the departure of the army, was now still further reduced, and an 
era of hard times began that effectually retarded the growth of Buffalo 
for a period of five years. While money was plenty, many had become 
involved in debt, which they now found themselves unable to pay. 
Flour sold in Buffalo at fifteen dollars a barrel and other provisions were 
comparatively high in price. The Gazette of August 20th, stated that 
there was "not a barrel of breadstuff in the village for sale." Mr. 
Sheldon Ball wrote in 1825, that "a scene of insolvency ensued, more 
distressing, if possible, than even the destruction of the village." 

But a project was already being revived, which was destined to put new 
life into the stagnant village — the construction of a " grand canal " across 
the State from Lake Erie to the Hudson river, with its western terminus 
at either Buffalo or Black Rock. The first survey for this great water- 
way was made from Buffalo to the Genesee in the summer of 18 16, and 
the work was thereafter ^pushed ahead with vigor, as has been detailed 
in the preceding volume ; but it was not till 1820 that Buffalo and Bkck 
Rock were very materially affected by the prospect of an early comple- 
tion of the canal. 

The first movement towards the incorporation of the village of Buf- 
falo, was the passage of an act by the Legislature April 2, 181 3 ; but the 

78 History of Buffalo. 

exciting events of that year prevented a consummation of the object. The 
following year another similar attempt was made and with a like result ; 
the trustees named in the act failed to organize. In April, 1816, a third 
act was passed under which the incorporation of the village was effected. 
Oliver Forward, Charles Townsend, Heman B. Potter, Ebenezer Wal- 
den, Jonas Harrison and Samuel Wilkeson were named as the trustees. 
In April, 1822, another act of incorporation was passed, extending the 
powers of the village authorities and repealing all former acts of incor- 
poration. Ordinances were passed about the last of the year 1816, pro- 
viding for better security against fire, and the village trustees were 
authorized to ascertain the practicability of procuring a supply of water 
by means of the water courses, streams and reservoirs. Twenty-five lad- 
ders were ordered made within thirty days and all owners of houses 
were required to provide "one good leathern bucket for each house, store 
or shop ;*' to cause their chimneys to be swept and in the future to build 
all funnels of chimneys large enough for chimney-sweepers to go through 
them. This action was undoubtedly caused by a fire, as George Badger, 
in the newspapers of December 17th, publicly thanked the citizens for assist- 
ance rendered him at his late fire. Another ordinance was passed about 
the same time authorizing the raising of a tax of $1,400. On the 26th of 
July, 1820, ordinances were passed to prevent the selling of damaged 
meat in the village ; ordering the removal of dead animals beyond the 
city limits; pi'ohi biting the discharge of fire-arhis; abating the produc- 
tion of nuisances of all kinds : ordering slaughter-houses to be kept under 
the inspection of the trustees ; prohibitingthe beating of drums and blow- 
ing of fifes in the streets ; fast driving and leading of horses on the side- 
walks. On the loth of June, 1822, an ordinance was passed to prevent the 
obstruction of the streets with buildings, lumber, teams, earth, etc.; July 
15th, an ordinance was passed prohibiting the selling of liquor to Indians 
and intoxicated persons. Penalties, usually of small fines, were imposed 
in all cases of infraction of these village laws. These measures for the 
government of the village were, of course, followed by many others simi- 
lar in character, which need not be referred to in detail 

As an indication that the people were laboring under a general 
depression of business and scarcity of money, we may mention that a 
meeting was called for the 12th of October, 18 19, at Cook's* inn, (where 
the Tifft House now stands,) to take into consideration the pecuniary 
embarrassments of the county ; whether anything effectual was accom- 
plished at this meeting, does not appear. 

Under the law of 181 8, by which the gradual abolition of slavery 
was decreed, and which provided that young slaves might be brought 
from other States, provided their owners filed an affidavit that such 
slaves would not be held in bondage beyond the ages of twenty-eight 

* Raphmttl Cook, the well known and successful inn4ceeper, died in Buffalo, April 15, 1821, 

Slavery in Erie County. 79 

years if males, and twentj-five years if females, General Porter and his 
southern wife, Mrs. Grayson, dayghter of John C. Breckinridge, 
brought five youn^ slaves to Black Rock in 1820. The affidavits of Mr. 
and Mrs. Porter appear in the pages of the old town book of Buffalo. 
As late as July, 1820, a black servant girl was advertised at auction in 
Buffalo, with other property, by Jonas Harrison— the last flickering 
embers of slavery in the county. That was only about sixty years ago,- and 
even a year later the wolves were so troublesome not very far from 
Buffalo, that the bounty on their scalps was raised, while ten years later, 
William Hodge, as he state$, shot deer near the site of the Insane 
Asylum, and as far south as the Normal School ! 

Orlando Allen, for many years a prominent and honored citizen 
of Buffalo, came here in 18 19, and entered the office of Dr. Cy renins 
Chapin to learn the mysteries of medicine ; he was then sixteen years 
of age.* 

In 1820 the population of the entire township of Buffalo had 
reached but 2,095, including, of course. Black Rock. Most of the 
business of Buffalo was then done between Exchange street and the 
court house park. Among the stores and shops on Main street were 
many dwellings, and others were scattered along EUicott, Washington, 
Pearl and Franklin streets ; a few houses also were located on the cross 
streets. Where is now built up the northeastern portion of the city, 
was low ground that had not even been tilled, and the boys and girls of 
the village went to a place not very far up Genesee street, where there 
was a log causeway, to pick blackberries. The irregular line of the 
forest came down to within from forty to a hundred rods of Main street, 
as far southward as Cold Spring. About this time a spring near Dela^ 
ware street and just north of Virginia, was made the rendezvous of a 
squirrel hunting party led by Frederick B. Merrill and Joseph Clary. 
That spot was selected because there the woods extended as far east- 
ward as Delaware street, affording the party a grateful shade. 

As early as November 15, 1816, a meeting was held at Pomeroy's 
tavern, to '' take into consideration the improvement of the harbor.*' 
The bar across the mouth of the creek was impassable for vessels of any 
considerable size, the water at times not being more than two feet deep^ 
The twenty-five or thirty small sloops and schooners then composing the 
lake marine, were compelled to lay off from the port half a mile or more, 
or else run down to Black Rock and anchor below the rapids. Most of 
the lake disasters that occurred in the vicinity were charged directly to 
the entire lack of harbor improvements. The light-house at the mouth 
of the creek was finished' in July, 1818, and on the 23d of August, the 
new steamer, Walk^in-the-Water^ succeeded, with the aid of Captain 
Sheldon Thompson's " horn breeze," in making her passage up the rapids 

* See biographic sketch in later pages. 

8o History of Buffalo. 

and into the lake : this last named event rendered the necessity of a har- 
bor still more apparent. 

The citizens of Buffalo now saw that the future growth and impor- 
tance of the village depended largely upon the immediate construction 
of a harbor, and various schemes were discussed for the accomplishment 
of the object — ^among the plans suggested were a lottery ; the formation 
of an incorporated company ; and a petition to the government for aid. 
This agitation led to the organization of what was known as the Buffalo 
Harbor Company, in the spring of 1819, comprising originally nine of 
the foremost men of the village, as follows : Jonas Harrison, Ebenezer 
Walden, H. B. Potter, J. G. Camp, Oliver Forward, A. H.Tracy, Ebenezer 
Johnson, E. F. Norton, and Charles Townsend. 

These gentlemen applied to the Legislature for the passage of a 
law (finally passed April 17, 18 19,) by the provisions of which the State 
agreed to loan the Harbor Company $12,000, provided the amount was 
secured by individual bonds and mortgages of the members of the com- 
pany for twice the amount of the loan. If the harbor, when completed, 
proved acceptable to the State authorities, the bonds were to ht canceled ; 
otherwise the company would have to pay the bonds and be reimbursed 
from future tolls. The managers of the company declined to accept this 
proposition, with the exception of Charles Townsend, (with whom was 
associated George Coit) and Oliver Forward.* They were joined by 
Samuel Wilkeson towards the last of 18 19, the offer of the State was 
accepted and the bonds were made. Mr. Wilkeson had, for some rea^ 
son, declined to join the original company.f 

The money was received from the State, and in the spring of i8ao, 
the first work on the harbor was commenced. A superintendent was 
secured at fifty dollars a month ; but he was retained but a short time. 
After looking in vain for a more suitable man than the first, Mr. 
Wilkeson himself accepted the superintendency, to the neglect of his 
personal business. 

* '* Finding that none of the original Company excepting Townsend and Forward would join in 
making the secarity to the State, and that the appropriation would lapse if much more time was 
lost, I agreed to join those gentlemen in making the security/'— /m^ WiiAetom, 

t After William Peacock had completed his sunrey of Buffalo Creek, with reference to the oon- 
struction of a harbor, as described in the accompanying eztracto from Judge Wilkeson's writings, lie 
made a favorable report in which he advised the construction of a stone pier extending into the lake 
nine hundred feet, at a cost of $12,787 ; this would give a depth of thirteen feet of water. (It is 
now claimed by practical men that such a pier would have cost half a million dollars.) In opposi- 
tion to Mr. Peacock's report and to the Buffalo Harbor scheme as a whole, a correspondent of the 
Albany Atgus^ of February 19. 1819, writing over the signature •* Projector," ridiculed BuflUo 
Creek as a future hartx>r. *• Two schooners can barely pass each other there," he wrote, and then 
proceeded to demonstrate the feasibility of constructing a mile wall with a lock of four feet lift at 
Black Rock, to overcome the current of the rapids. He would have sold lou on Grand Island, 
(then the property of the State) to secure a retuni of the investment A bridge fiom the island was 
to connect it with the " City of Ene," which would spring up where Black Rock then stood. This 
was but one of hundreds of schemes that were ad wiced by the advocates of a harbor at either village. 


Construction of the First Harbor. 8i 

Some years before the death of Judge Wilkeson, he wrote and 
published a series of eight brief papers giving a detailed history of 
the construction of the first harbor and the steps that led to it. These 
papers bear the impress of impartiality upon their face ; they are written 
by the man who, perhaps, was better informed upon the subject 
than any other person ; they are vivid descriptions of an event that, at 
least at that period, controlled to a great extent the immediate future of 
Buffalo. These facts give this series of papers a degree of interest that 
prompt their publication, almost entire, in this work, especially as they 
are not now easily accessible to the general public. Judge Wilkeson 
wrote as follows : — 

"The war which had swept over our frontier had impoverished the 
inhabitants of the little place, that has since grown into the City of the 
Lakes. Their property had been destroyed, they were embarrassed by 
debts contracted in rebuilding their houses which had been burned by 
the enemy; they were without capital to prosecute to advantage 
mechanical or mercantile employments ; without a harbor or any means 
of participating in the lake trade, and were suffering with the country at 
large, all the evils of a deranged currency. In the midst of these accu- 
mulated embarrassments, the construction of the Erie canal was be^n 
and promised help, however distant might be the time of its completion, 
Buffalo was to be its terminating point ; — and when the canal was com- 
pleted, our village would become a city. But no craft larger than a 
canoe could enter Buffalo creek. All forwarding business was done at 
Black Rock, and the three or four small vessels that we owned in Buffalo 
received and discharged their cargoes at that place. A harbor was then 
indispensably necessary at the terminus of tne canal ; and unless one 
coula be constructed at Buffalo before the western section of the canal 
was located, it might terminate at Black Rock. This was the more to 
be apprehended, as an opinion prevailed that harbors could not be made 
on the lakes at the mouths of the rivers. But a harbor we were resolved 
to have. Application was accordingly made to the Legislature for a 
survey of the creek, and an act was passed on the loth of April, 1818, 
authorizing the survey and directing the Supervisors of the county of 
Niagara to pay $3 a day to the surveyor and to assess the amount to the 
county. The survey was made by the Hon. William Peacock, during 
the summer of that year, gratuitously. Then came the important 
question, where to ^et the money to build this harbor. At that day no 
one thought of looking to Congress for appropriations, and there was 
no encouragement to apply to the Legislature of the State ; the citizens 
could not raise the means, however willing they niight have been. A 
public meeting was called and an agent (the Hon. Charles Townsend) 
was appointeato proceed to Albany and obtain a loan. Jonas Harrison, 
Ebenezer Walden, H. B. Potter, J. G. Camp, Oliver Forward, A. H. 
Tracy, Ebenezer Johnson, E. F. Norton ana Charles Townsend were 
the applicants. Judge Townsend, after a protracted effort succeeded, 
and an act was passed, April 17, 18 19, authorizing a loan to the above 
mentioned persons and their associates of $12,000, for twelve years, to 
be secured on bond and mortgs^e to double that amount, and applied to 
the construction of a harbor, which the State had reserved the right to 
take when completed, and to cancel the securities. The year 1819 was 

82 History of Buffalo. 

one of general financial embarrassment, and no where was the pressure* 
or want of money more sensibly felt than in the lake country. It had 
no market, and its produce was of little value. Some of the assutia i ofi 
became embarrassed and others discouraged. The sumnoer passed 
away, and finally all refused to execute the required securities, except 
Judge Townsend and Judge Forward. Thus matters stood in Decem- 
ber, 1 8 19. Unless the condition of the loan should be complied with, 
the appropriation would be lost, and another might not be easily 
obtained ; lor the project of a harbor at Black Rock, and the termina- 
tion of the canal at that place, was advocated by influential men, and the 
practicability of making a harbor at the mouth of Butlalo creek was 
seriously questioned. At this crisis, Judge Wilkeson who had declined 
being one of the original company, came forward and, with Messrs. 
Townsend and Forward, agreedf to make the necessary securities. This 
was perfected during the winter of 1820 — each individual giving his 
several bond and mortgage for $8,000. The money thus loaned was 
received in the sprine. By an arrangement between the parties, it was 
disbursed by Judge Townsend. An experienced harbor-builder was to 
be obtained to superintend the work. One was engaged who had 
acquired reputation in improving the navigation of some river 
down east. He was to receive I50 per month. Under his advice, 
a contract was made for a hundred cords of flint stone from the Plains, 
at $5 per cord, and four hundred hemlock piles, from twenty to thirty- 
six feet long at thirty-one cents each. While the stone and piles were 
being delivered, the superintendent with several carpenters, was em- 
ployed in building a pile-driving machine and scow. An agent was 
dispatched to the nearest furnace (which was in Portage county, Ohio,) 
to provide the hammer and machinery. 

" Mr. Townsend, with much solicitude, continued to watch the 
movements of the superintendent for a few weeks, making himself fully 
acquainted with his plans and managementt He became satisfied that 
the superintendent, if not incompetent, was not such an economist as our 
limited means required, and that if we retained him, the money would be 
spent without getting a harbor. The Judge was decided that it was 
better to abandon the work than to pursue it under the then existing 
arrangements. His associates concurring, the superintendent was dis- 
charged ; but no substitute could be obtained. West Point engineers 
were scarce at that time, and if one could have been found, |i 2,000 
would have been but a small sum in his hands. The situation of the com- 
pany was embarrassing. Private property had been mortgaged to raise 
the money, nearly $1,000 had been spent in preparations to commence a 
work that neither ot the associates knew how to execute, nor could any 
one be found, experienced in managing men, who would undertake the 
superintendence. Mr. Townsend was an invalid and consequently unable 
to perform the duty. Mr. Forward was wanting in the practical exper- 
ience that was necessary. Mr. Wilkeson had never seen a harbor, and 
was engaged in a business that required his unremitted attention ; but 
rather than the effort should be abandoned he finally consented to under- 
take the superintendence. 

" Having abandoned his own private business, Mr. Wilkeson called 
his men out to work the next morning by daylight — without suitable 
tools, without boats, teams or scows. Neitner the plan of the work, nor 
its precise location were settled. But the harbor was commenced. Two 

84 History of Buffalo. 

plans had been proposed for the work ; one, by driving parallel lines of 
piles, and filling up the intermediate space with brush and stone, and the 
other by a pier of hewn timber filled with stone. The latter plan was 
adopted, and the location of the pier having been settled, the number of 
laborers was increased, and contracts immediately made for suitable 
timber and stone, to be delivered as fast as they might be required. In 
the meantime, the timber intended for the piles was used in the con- 
struction of cribs, three of which were put down the first day. The first 
two days after commencing the work, the lake was calm; but the suc- 
ceeding night a heavy swell set in ; the waves acting on the outside of 
the crib, forced the sand and gravel from under them, sinking the ends 
of some, the sides of others, and throwing them out of the line — the 
whole presenting a most discouraging appearance. Fortunately a little 
brush had been accidentally thrown on tne windward side of one of the 

})iers, which became covered with sand, and preserved this pier from the 
ate of the others. Profiting by this discovery, every crib subsequently 
put down, was placed on a thick bed of brush extending several feet to 
the windward of it. But other unforeseen difficulties were soon 
•experienced. The cribs could be put down only when the lake ivas per- 
fectly smooth. However fine the weather, the swell raised b^ an ordinary 
sailing breeze suspended the work in the water. To obviate this diffi- 
culty, the cribs, (which after the first week, were formed of large, square 
timbers,) were put up and completed on shore. The timbers were 
secured by ties six feet apart, maae to fit so tight as to require to be 
driven home with a sledge, and were bored with a two-inch augur ready 
for the trunnels, which were two feet long, and made of the best oak or 
hickory. The timbers were marked and numbered, so that when required 
for use, could be taken apart, floated out to their place, and put together 
in an hour, even in ten feet of water, and secured with stone the same 
day. The manner of constructing the pier is thus particularly described, 
as it so effectually secured the timbers together, that when the west end 
of the pier was undermined by the high water of the creek and turned 
over, so that the sides became the top, not a stick was separated. After 
the prevalence of a west wind for several days, the water oecame smooth, 
but it rained severely and the workmen justly claimed exemption from 
labor. To be interrupted by swells in fair weather, and by the rains 
when the lake was smooth, would never answer. Every day's experience 
admonished the company of the necessity of economizing their means, 
and it was already fearecl that the fund provided would prove insufficient 
for the object to be accomplished. A new contract was, therefore, made 
with the workmen, by which their wages were raised two dollars a month, 
in consideration of their working" on rainy days; and from that time 
until the harbor was completed, the work was prosecuted without 
regard to the weather. * » * « * After the pier was 
extended about thirty rods into the lake, and settled as well as the limited 
time would allow, a carpenter was employed at pne dollar per day, to 
superintend the raising of the pier from the surface of the water, to its 
full height. * * * * As the work advanced into deep 
water, the bases of the cribs were enlarged, and the cost of the work 
alarmingly increased. It was resolved to suspend operations for that 
year, on reaching seven and a half feet of water. On tne 7th of Septem- 
ber, after the timber work was completed, and while the pier was but 
partially filled with stone, two small vessels came under its fee and made 

Construction of the First Harbor. 85 

fast. Towards evening, appearances indicated a storm, and while the 
superintendent and captains were deliberating whether the vessels might 
not endanger the pier, and perhaps carry away that part to which they 
were fastened, the gale commenced, rendering it impossible to remove 
the vessels otherwise than by casting them loose, andf letting them go on 
the beach. This was proposed by the superintendent, and agreed to by 
the captains, on condition that the safety of the pier should appear to be 
endangered by the vessels. Both the pier and the vessels, however, 
remained uninjured through the storm, which was regarded as no mean 
test of the utility and permanency of the works. The pier, which at this 
time extended fiity rods into the lake, was in a few days filled with stone, 
and the operations upon it suspended for the season. 

" It may not be out of place here to name the captains of the two 
first vessels which found shelter in Buffalo harbor — Austin and Fox. 
The former was an old Point Judith fisherman who, after spending most 
of his life on the ocean, removed to the Vermilion river and settled on 
a farm. But yielding to his yearning for the water, he built a small ves- 
sel, of which he was captain and nis sons the crew, and engaged in the 
lake trade. He was a shrewd, observing man, had seen and examined 
many artificial harbors, and his advice contributed much to the correct 
location and permanent construction of Buffalo harbor. Fox, long known 
as a successful captain on the lakes, took a deep interest in the construc- 
tion of the work, and during the three years that it was in progress, fre- 
auently aided by volunteering his own labor and that of his crews. Tri- 
ing as this- circumstance may appear, it gave at the time no small encour- 
agement and has been gratefully remembered. 

" Although the pier had been successfully extended over nine hun- 
dred feet and was believed to be sufficiently strong to resist the force of 
the waves, still it was but an experiment. The situation was the most 
exposed of any on the lake, and no similar work had been constructed. 
Should the whole, or any considerable part of the work be destroyed by 
the gales of wind, or by the ice, the fund remaining would be insufficient 
to repair the damage, and extend the work to the requisite distance to 
make a harbor. Should the experiment of the pier prove ever so suc- 
cessful, a most difficult part of the plan for forming a harbor was yet to 
be executed, and the more difficult because the expense would depend 
on contingencies which the company could not control. Buffalo creek, 
in 1820, entered the lake about sixty rods north of its present mouth, 
running for some distance parallel with the shore. A new channel had 
to be made across the point of sand which separates the creek from the 
lake. This point was about twenty rods wide, and elevated about seven 
feet above the level of the lake. It was proposed to remove the sand by 
scrapers to the level of low water, dam tne mouth of the creek by brush 
and stone, and trust to the action of the spring flood to form a straight 
channel in a line with, and near to, the pier. The scraping was com- 
menced in November, by the voluntary labor of several of the citizens; 
but instead of finding the point composed of fine sand, as had been 
expected, when a few feet of the top was removed, a heavy, compact 
body of coarse gravel and small stones was found, which, if removed 
by the current of the creek, instead of being carried into the deep water of 
the lake, would be deposited to the leeward of the pier in the very place 
our channel must be, and from wheflce there was neither money nor 
machinery to remove it. The scraping was therefore given up, and the 

86 History of Buffalo. 

subject of forming a new channel, proving a very serious one, laid over 
for further consideration, in the expectation tnat some plan could be 
devised to overcome the seemingly insurmountable difficulty. The 
company had the satisfaction to see the fall gales pass away without 
doine any damage to the pier, not even removing a single timber, and it 
was loaded with so great a body of ice that no apprehension was enter- 
tained of damage from the breaking up of the lake in the spring. 

" Favorable contracts were made for timber during the winter, and 
ties to complete the pier ; and as it was sufficiently extended to protect 
the pile-driving scow, and as the use of this machine would be important 
in farther prosecuting the work, it was determined to finish it. A ham- 
mer and gearing, however, were wanted. These had been contracted for 
in Ohio, but, owing to a misunderstanding, had not been received. The 
iron gearing could be dispensed with, and a good substitute for a ham- 
mer was found in a United States mortar, used during the last war, but 
which had lost one of its trunnions. After breaking off the other, two 
holes were bored through the ends for the staple by which to hoist it. 
The ends of the staple projecting into the chamber were bent, and the 
chamber itself filled with metal. Similar holes were bored on each side, 
and two bars of iron between two and three inches square, firmly secured, 
to act as guides. The hollow part being filled with a hard piece of wood, 
cut off even with the end, it proved to be an excellent hammer of about 
two thousand pounds weight.* The machinery to raise the hammer was 
the cheapest and simplest kind, and worked by a single horse. Before 
attempting the farther extension of the pier, it was resolved to attempt 
the formation of a new channel. About the 20th of May, laborers were 
engaged, and the pile-driver put in operation. Two rows of piles, six 
feet apart, were driven across the creek, in a line with the right bank of 
the intended channel, and the space between these rows of piles was 
filled with fine brush, straw, damaged hay, shavings, etc. This material 
was pressed down by drift logs, which were hoisted into their places by 
the use of the pile-driver. On the upper side of the work a body of 
sand was placed, making a cheap and tolerably tight dam, by which the 
creek could be raised about three feet. Then by breaking the bank at 
the west end of the dam, a current was formed sufficiently strong to 
remove about fifteen feet of the adjoining bank, to the depth of eight ^ct. 
The success of the first experiment was most gratifying. The dam was 
extended across the new made channel, and connected with the bank, 
with the least possible delay, and every dam full of water let off removed 
hundreds of yards of gravel, and deposited it not only entirely out of the 
way, but at the same time filled up the old channel. While this plan 
was in successful operation, and when the new channel had been pushed 
to within a few feet of the lake, and the strongest hopes were enter- 
tained that, by the same process, the sand and gravel, even under the 
shoal water of the lake, could be removed and the channel extended to 
the end of the pier, and the harbor rendered immediately available, the 
work was arrested by one of the most extraordinary rises of the lake 
ever witnessed. About seven o'clock in the morning, the lake being 
entirely calm, the water suddenly rose, and by a single swell swept away 
the logs that secured the materials in the dam, broke away the dam on 
the east side, fully destroyed the west end, which was made of plank, 
and left the whole a total wreck. A more discouraging scene can 

• Thit old mortar now fUnds on the sidewalk at the comer of Main and Dayton sinets. 

Construction of the First Harbor. 87 

scarcely be imagined. The pile-driving scow, without which the damage 
could not be repaired, narrowly escaped destruction. The blind horse 
which worked the pile-driver, was thrown from the platform pn the 
scow, and, swimming in his accustomed circle, came near drowning. 
All the lumber, timber, piles prepared for use, with the boats, scows, 
and every floating article within the range of the swell, were swept from 
their places and driven up the creek. It was afterwards ascertained that 
an extraordinary vein ot wind had crossed the lake a few miles above 
this place, and proceeding eastward, prostrated the timber in its course, 
and marked its way with feariul destruction. This was supposed to have 
caused the swell referred to. 

" After securing the scows, boats and lumber which had been put 
afloat, the condition of the dam was examined. About thirty feet of the 
cast end was entirely gone, and the injury to other parts was greater 
than was at first anticipated. * * * Although a flood had been wished 
for, to aid in deepening and widening the new channel, yet the disastrous 
accident which had just occurred destroyed the only means of controlling 
it and turning it to account. A freshet then, mi^ht open the old chan- 
nel, or perhaps enlarge the new one in a wrong direction and even under- 
mine the pier. It was therefore resolved to repair the damage if possi- 
ble. The pile driver was put in operation to restore the breach at the 
east end oi the dam, and the men set to work to collect materials ; but 
the rain increasing, and the weather beinc^ uncommonly cold, it was soon 
discovered that without a large additional force the dam coold not be so 
far repaired as to resist the flood, which might be expected within twenty- 
four hours. 

^'The recent disaster and the importance of immediate help was 
communicated to the citizens, a large number of whom, notwithstandins" 
the rain fell in torrents, repaired to the dam. They were distributed 
in parties, some getting brush, others collecting loc^s, some placing the 
materials in the dam, while others aided in working the pile-driver. 

* * * Without this help of the citizens, it would have been 
impossible to make the necessary repairs on the dam ; with it, and by 
continuing the labor of the harbor workmen by torch-light until late at 
night, all was done that human effort could do to prepare for the flood. 

* * * The rain having continued through the night, in the morning 
the flood was magnificent. The strong northeast wind which had pre- 
vailed for nearly twenty-four hours, had lowered the lake two or three 
feet and added much to' the effect of tne water in forming a new channel. 
The barrier erected had produced the desired effect, the gravel removed 
out of the new channel was carried down the lake, and in fact the whole 
operation was so favorable that it seemed as though Providence had 
directed this flood in aid of the great work of forming a harbor. The 
breaking up of the dam had disheartened the men, and their extraordinary 
efforts to repair the damage had exhausted them ; but a day's rest and 
witnessing the triumphant success of the plan for opening a channel, 
restored them to cheerfulness. The <ioubts and fears that were enter- 
tained of ultimate success in makincp a harbor were dissipated. When 
the freshet had subsided, it was found that the average width of the new 
channel was about ninety feet at the bottom, and for the first twelve rods 
it was as deep as the creek, and nowhere less than five feet, furnishing a 
straight channel. From this time, smaill vessels could enter and depart 
from Buffalo harbor without interruption. 

88 History of Buffalo. 

" Much yet remained to be done. The lines of piles in extension 
of the dam were continued and filled up with brush and stone, intended 
to form a permanent margin for the north bank of Buffalo creek. This 
work was extended forty-six rods from the east bank of the creek, the dam 
was strengthened, the number of men increased, and preparations made 
for recommencing the pier. On a careful examination and measurement 
of the water, it was found that the pier, if extended in the direction of 
that already built, would require to be carried out much farther than 
had been anticipated. This discovery was the more embarrassing, as 
the company had become satisfied that they would be unable, with the 
fund provided, to complete the pier even to the extent at first con- 
teniplated, and it had been resolved to apply to the citizens for aid, 
which was subsequently done. Scrip was issued entitling the bearer to 
zp?o rata interest in the harbor. Over $i,ooo of this scrip was disposed 
of for a small part of which cash was received, but the greater part 
was received in goods, etc. For the sums thus advanced no considera- 
tion was ever received by the holders of the scrip, and perhaps some of 
them to whom no explanation has been made, may have felt themselvesr 
aggrieved. For the satisfaction of such, it may be well here to state 
how this business was closed. The act of the Legislature creatine the 
Buffalo Harbor Company and making the loan, provided that it the 
Legislature did not accept the harbor, it should be and remain the 
property of the company, and that the canal commissioners should 
settle the rate of tolls to be paid by all boats and vessels entering it. 
The issue of the scrip was predicated on this provision ; and it was 
believed that if the State accepted the harbor, they would willingly pay 
the extra cost of its construction, over and above the- loan of $12,000 
(which was to be canceled). This no doubt would have been done but 
for the jprovisions of a law passed in the spring of 1822, entitled, 'An 
act for encouraging the construction of harbors at Buffalo and Black 
Rock.' This act provided to pay the two harbor companies, Buffalo 
and Black Rock, each $12,000 on completing their harbors, thus limiting 
the sum to the amount already loanecf to the Buffalo Harbor Company, 
and cutting off all hope of remuneration from the State for any amount 
that might be expended beyond that sum. ♦ * * ♦ ♦ The com- 
pany could not retain the harbor as private property and impose tolls 
on vessels entering it, without driving the business to a rival port* 
Application was therefore made to the Legislature in the spring of 1825, 
which passed a resolution to cancel the bonds and mortgages given to 
secure the loan, but refused to allow the claim for the additional sum 
expended ; which sum included not only the money received for the 
scrip, but several hundred dollars advanced by Townsend,* Forward 
and Wilkeson, beside contributions by other individuals. 

" After ascertaining the distance to which it would be necessary to 
extend the pier, and estimating the cost of completing it, the continuous 
line was abandoned, and it was resolved to lay down a pier two hundred 
feet long, several rods south and west of the pier already built, but in 
the same direction. This pier would form the western termination of 
the harbor, and was to be connected with the other by two lines of piles 
eight feet apart. » » » B^^^t^ pile^driving and pier work 

• In a foot note Mr. Wilkeson offers apology for injustice done 10 Mr. George Coil in not 
connecting bis name with that of Judge townsend in the responsibilities assumed and moneys 
advanced for the construction of the harbor. 

The First HARfiOR Completed. 89 

were commenced and prosecuted with vigor and economy suited to the 
scanty funds of the company. ♦ * « * j^ attempting to 
put down the first crib which was to form the eastern end of the block, 
m about ten feet of water, the current was found so strong that it was 
found impossible to keep the brush in line on which to place the crib. To 
obviate this difficulty, piles were driven ten feet apart, on the north line 
of the proposed pier. This not only secured the brush, but served as a 
guide in putting down the cribs, which for this block were forty feet 
u>ng, twenty feet wide at the bottom, and eighteen at the surface of the 
water. » * * ^ slight rise in the creek about the middle of 
July, encouraged a hope that by a temporary contraction of the channel, 
it might be deepened. About fifty of the citizens volunteered their aid 
for a day, and a foot of additional depth was gained. * * * 
Thus was completed the first work of the kind ever constructed on the 
lakes. It had occupied two hundred and twenty-one working days in 
building, (the laborers always resting on the Sabbath,) and extended into 
the lake about eighty rods, to twelve feet of water. It was begun, car- 
ried on and completed principally by three private individuals, some of 
whom mortgaged the whole of their real estate, to raise the means for 
making an improvement in which they had but a common interest." 

On the first day of November, 1821, the steamer Walk-in-the-Watery 
the building and launching of which three years before, is described in 
another chapter, was driven ashore nearly opposite the foot of Main 
street, about a mile above the light-house, and wrecked. This led to the 
building of another steamer, which event had a strong influence in decid- 
ing the question of the permanence and efficiency of the BuflFalo harbor, 
and consequently, upon her immediate commercial prospects also. The 
steamer was the property of New York capitalists, and an agent was 
sent on at once to make arrangements for the construction of a new craft. 
His instructions were to build the boat at Buffalo, unless he found the 
harbor unavailable. He first visited Black Rock, where the people con- 
vinced him that the Buffalo harbor would prove a failure, especially as it 
would remain filled with ice long after the lake was clear in the spring. 
The agent accordingly- decided to have the new boat built at Black 
Rock, and came on to Buffalo to draw the necessary papers. But there 
were men in Buffalo, who had the fullest faith in their harbor ; at least 
they saw that the time had come when it must be tested, and they must 
stand or fall with it, to some extent. Judge Wilkeson was deputized to 
wait on the agent at his hotel, with the general instructions to secure the 
building of the steamboat at Buffalo, at all hazards. 

The " committee " and the agent discussed the matter briefly, the 
latter giving as his chief reason for not building the boat at Buffalo, the 
fear that she would be detained in the harbor in the spring by the ice. 
Mr. Wilkeson was not long in proposing to the agent such terms as he 
thought must induce a change of decision. Said he : m 1, r w 

- We will furnish timber at a quarter less than ^*^f. ^^^^jV 5^?^^^ 
prices, and will give you a bond with ample security, for the payment o 

90 History of Buffalo. 

one hundred and fifty dollars a day for every day the boat may be 
detained in the creek beyond May first** 

The offer was accepted, the bond was signed by most of the respon- 
sible citizens of the village and the building of the boat begun. 

Of the passage of the Superior out of the harbor and the incidents 
connected therewith, and other harbor matters, Mr. Wilkeson*s papers 
continue to speak ks follows : — 

*' Buffalo having completed a harbor and established a ship-yard 
began to assume new life. Brighter prospects opened and it only 
remained to secure the termination of the canal at this place, of which 
there was a fair prospect. David Thomas, an engineer in the employ of 
the Canal Board, had been occupied the preceding summer in making 
surveys preparatory to a location of the canal from tne lake to the moun- 
tain ridge. He had spent some time in examining the Niagara river and 
Buffalo creek and harbor. He was known to be opposed to the plan of 
terminating the canal in an artificial l>asin at the Rock, and it was 
presumed that he would report decidedly in favor of terminating the 
canal in Buffalo creek. This encourae^ed tne citizens to send an agent to 
Albany to represent to the president of the Canal Board, DeWitt Clinton, 
the fact that a harbor haa been completed, and to urge the immediate 
location of the canal to Buffalo. This subject was considered by the 
Board and the canal report of that year, (1823) contained their decision 
in favor of Buffalo. 

" Although this decision was not unexpected, it occasioned great 
rejoicing to the citizens, who, burnt out and impoverished by the war, 
and disappointed in their just expectations of remuneration from the 
government, had for years been battling manfully with adversity, cheered 
on by hopes which were now about to be realized. While congratulat- 
ing themselves on the prospect of still better times, the expected flood 
came and removing a large body of sand and gravel, opened a wide and 
deep channel from the creek to the lake. But, unfortunately, a heavy 
bank of ice resting on the bottom of the lake and rising" several feet above 
its surface, had been formed during the winter, extending from the west 
end of the pier to the shore. This ice bank arrested the current of the 
creek, forming an eddy along side of the pier, into which the sand and 

Savel removed by the flood were deposited, filling up the channel for 
e distance of over three hundred feet, and leavingTittfe more than three 
feet of water where, before the freshet, there was an average of four and 
a half feet. It was attempted to open a channel through the ice by blast- 
ing, but this proved ineffectual ; no other means were tried and it was 
now feared that the predictions of our Black Rock neighbors were about 
to be realized. 

" This obstruction of the harbor produced not only discouragement, 
but consternation. A judgment bona had been executed, which was a 
lien upon a large portion of the real estate of the village for the pay- 
ment of $1 50 per day, from and after the first of May, until the channel 
could be sufficiently opened to let the steamboat pass into the lake. To 
form a channel even eight rods wide and nine feet deep, would require 
the removal of not less than six thousand yards of gravel, for w^ich 
work there was neither an excavator, nor time, skill or money to procure 
one. The superintendent of the harbor was absent ; as soon as the news 

A New Obstruction in the Channel. 91 

of the disaster reached him, he hastened home, and arriving about the 
middle of March, a meeting of the citizens concerned was called. It 
was resolved immediately to attempt the opening of the channel, and a 
subscription was proposed to defray the expenses which were estimated 
at $1,600. The subscription went heavily, only about $300 being obtained, 
but without waiting to see how the means were to be provided, prepar- 
tions were made for commencing the work the next morning." 

Here follow details of how the work of deepening the channel was 
performed, by the aid of wooden scrapers drawn through the gravel by 
means of capstans set up on scows, and then pulled back by ropes in the 
hands of men on the opposite side. Mr. Wilkeson then continues : — 

"The pi ogress made in removing the sand, was most encouraging, 
and there appeared no doubt that by increasing the scrapers, the channel 
could be opened before the first of May. Piles were put down, and a 
raft of timoer substituted for scows, on which to erect more capstans. 
Saturday night came, and the workmen were dismissed until Monday 
morning. During the ni^^ht a heavy gale set in and increased in violence 
until alK)ut noon on the Sabbath, when the ice began to break up, and 
the lake to rise. Soon the ice was in motion,' and driving in from the 
lake, was carried up the creek with such force as todestioy the scows and 
all the fixtures. The pile-driver, being securely lastenea by strong rig- 
ging to the piles, it was hoped would remain safe, but the fasts eave way 
and it was ariving* towaros the shore, where it could scarcely escape 
destruction. It was saved by the extraordinary exertions of two indi- 
viduals who, making their way to it by the aid of two boards each, which 
they pushed forward alternately over the floating ice agitated by the 
swells, succeeded in fastening it with a hawser to a pile near which it was 
floating. The scow being secured, the anxious and disheartened citizens 
and workmen, returned to their homes. Any community less inured to 
disappointments and adversity, would now have given up in despair, 
The very elements seemed to have conspired against them. The gale was 
frightful, and in the afternoon was accompained by a heavy fall of snow ; 
the water was high, and ice driving with violence on to the flats. 

" Monday morning the wind had subsided, but the weather was cold 
and still stormy. A eeneral meeting of the citizens was convened, to 
whom the superintendent stated j:he extent of the damage, the prob- 
able time it would take to repair it, the amount of funds requisite to 
complete the work, and his entire confidence in ultimate success. As 
the liability to pay a hundred and fifty dollars a day would soon attach, 
the importance of a united and speedy effort was more sensibly felt 
The meeting was fully attended, not only by those who were liable on 
the bond, but by many young mechanics and others. Dr. Johnson, John 
G. Camp arid Dr. Chapm were chosen a committee to obtain and collect 

The list of subscriptions was made up largely of goods and pro- 
visions and amounted to $1,361.25, ranging from two dollars to one 
hundred and ten dollars, which was given by Dr. Johnson ** in goods 
at cash prices.*' 

•* The provisions and goods were paid to the workmen without loss, 
but on much of the property (which was sold at auction) there was an 
average loss of about thirty-seven and a half per cent.'* 

92 History of Buffalo. 

After detailing the work ot again opening the channel with the 
scrapers, Mr. Wilkeson concludes as follows: — 

" Although the weather became good the latter part of April, and 
the work was prosecuted with the utmost diligence, yet the first of May 
came while there were still a few rods of the channel in which only 
about six and a half f£et of water had been gained. As considerable 
work yet remained to be done on the steamboat, and no loss or incon- 
venience could accrue to the owners in allowing a few days to deepen 
the channel, yet no time could be obtained. The boat was put in motion 
and fortunately the pilot. Captain Miller, having made himself accjuainted 
with what channel there was, ran her out into the lake without di£Bculty. 
The bond was canceled. The boat was, however, light, and when fully 
loaded would require much more water. The scraping was therefore 

'^ When the boat was finished, the citizens were invited to take ar. 
excursion on the lake. It was feared that if the boat should be deeply 
loaded with passengers, she would ground in the new made channel. 
Although this would be a trifling occurrence in itself, yet circumstances 
had recently occurred which led them to regard the experiment with 
the deepest anxiety. An act had passed a few days before, authorizine 
the Canal Board to contract for the construction of a harbor at BlacK 
Rock, which, if completed, might secure the termination of the canal at 
that place, and supercede Bufi^lo harbor. The subject was to be acted 
upon by the Canal Board in a few days, and even so 'trifling an incident 
as the grounding of a steamboat might influence their decision and 
deprive Buffalo of the fruits of all her toils and exertions in building a 
harbor. An effort was therefore made to either postpone the steamboat 
excursion or limit the number of passengers ; but in vain. Neither the 
captain nor a majority of the citizens could appreciate the solicitude of 
the few. The whole village crowded on board and the boat grounded. 
This was the more mortifying, as many of our Black Rock friends were 
on board, who had always predicted our failure. But after a few min- 
utes delay in landing some of the people on the pier, the boat moved for- 
ward. Went alongside of the pier, took on the passengers, and proceeded 
up the lake with bugles sounding and banners flying/'* 

Buffalo harbor was considerably improved in the summer of 1826^ 
under contract Mrith Messrs. Baker & Merrill, and was still further 
extended in 1829; nearly half the proposed ninety rods of pier being 
then finished. An appropriation for this work was obtained from Con- 
gress. This and some subsequent harbor improvements were executed 
under the local superintendence of Mr. Isaac S. Smith, then a well 
known resident of Buffalo. 

In July, 1827, a writer in one of the local papers stated that 
prominent citizens purposed memorializing the Board of Canal Commis- 

* The pier is built of wood and stone, commencing at the extremity of the sandy point, on 
which the light-hovse stands, extending in a westerly direction into the lake, eighty-fonr nids, and 
averaging eighteen feet in width ; it was built in 1819, 'ao and 'ai, for the purpose of preventing 
the accumulation of sands in the mouth of the creek ; and has so far answered the purpose, that 
there has been an uninterrupted and safe navigation (during the season) for the last three years, for 
any vessels that have navigated the lake, and in any weather.— ^r. BalCs PamphUi^ 1825. 

Efforts to Secure the Canal. 93 

sioners ioran independent canal between Black Rock and Buffalo, ''past 
Black Rock harbor ; '* the writer added, " that work having entirely 
failed, it is supposed that the Commissioners will not hesitate to go on 
with this canal/' etc. This appears to have been a revival of a subject 
that had been agitated before. 

The Black Rock pier finally gave way in May, 1826, to such an 
extent that all hopes of a substantial and permanent harbor there, were 

While these events were occurring, the war of words between 
Buffalo and Black Rock went on without interruption, and as soon as 
the canal project began to assume definite shape, the controversy 
involved the question of the terminus of that work and the rivalry 
between the two places became more bitter than ever before. Both of 
the villages had friends in the different Boards of Canal Commissioners 
and in the engineer corps, and no effort was spared to make the most 
of their influence. Black Rock had its natural harbor and besieged the 
State authorities for appropriations to extend it by the construction of 
piers, in expectation of thus influencing to some extent the Canal Com- 
missioners to make it the terminal point of the new commercial highway. 
One result of these efforts on the part of Black Rock, was the passage of 
a resolution by the Commissioners in June, 1822, to the effect that if Peter 
B. Porter and his associates succeeded in building ten or more rods of 
pier on their plan between Brace's store and the second angle east of 
Bird Island " by the first of May or June following," ^o the satisfaction 
of the village trustees, then the Canal Commissioners would either 
contract for the construction of the canal basin desired, or recommend 
that the State refund the money that had been expended. The Black 
Rock Harbor Company was thereupon formed, and a large quantity of 
timber and stone advertised for, which were used in the " Experiment 
Pier " that was afterwards built. This action inspired the Buffalonians 
to renewed opposition to their rivals, and assertions were freely 
made and published that the first run of ice in the river would destroy 
the proposed improvements ; this eventually proved to be the case. 

In the summer of 1822, a meeting the proceedings of which were 
destined to exert a mighty influence upon the future of Buffalo, was held 
at the Eagle tavern. It was a memorable gathering. DeWitt Chnton, 
then chairman of the Board of Canal Commissioners, presided at the meet- 
ing ; his associates were Stephen VanRensselaer, Henry Seymour, Myron 
Holley and Samuel Young. The momentous question at issue was, Buf- 
falo or Black Rock as the terminus of the canal. The latter village was 
represented by General Peter B. Porter, and most ably, for the heart of 
the speaker was in his cause. Samuel Wilkeson, at the head of a num- 
ber of the leading men of Buffalo, was there to advocate the interests of 
their village. Mr. Wilkeson, though unaccustomed to oratory, believed 

94 History of Buffalo. 

with his whole soul in the justice of his claims; he looked at the matter 
in its most practical light ; he knew he was right and he proved it by 
advancing many excellent reasons why the canal should come to Buffalo; 
his success proved his eloquence. The case was summed up by Mr. 
Clinton, and the Comniissioners decided * in favor of Buffalo. 

The events above narrated and their surrounding circumstances 
contributed to keep the controversy between the factions of Buffalo and 
Black Rock at fever heat for years. In the spring of 1823, the " Experi- 
ment Pier/' built by the people of Black Rock the previous summer, 
withstood the run of ice and high water, which was watched from the 
river banks for days, by many people from both villages. This fact 
caused some of the Canal Commissioners to express themselves still 
further in favor of improvements in that harbor and the war of words 
broke out with renewed activity. To-day the people of one village would 
be elated over a supposed victory, through some actual or fancied 
expression from the Commissioners, while to-morrow, perhaps, the rival 
village would fire a salute over a rumored triumph for itsell. So strong 
were the influences at work in favor of Black Rock, that as late as 
the summer of i823,t the people of Buffalo were caused great anxiety, 
through fears that their desired consummation would not be reached. 
One phase of this apprehension is exhibited in the following copy of an 
old subscription paper, the original of which is now in possession of Jno. 
Wilkeson, Esq. :— 

" Whereas, The late decision of the Canal Commissioners, termin- 
ating the canal at Black Rock, upon the plan proposed by Peter B. Por- 
ter, will be injurious to the commerce of Buffalo and, in a great measure, 
deprive the inhabitants of the benefits of the canal — ^in order, therefore, 
to open an uninterrupted canal navi^tion upon the margin of Nias^ara 
river, on the plan proposed by David Thomas,:^ from the point where 
the line established by him will intersect Porter's basin, to the point 
where it is proposed to dam the arm of said riyer to Squaw Island, the 
undersijgned agree to pay to Henry B. Lyman, the sums annexed to their 
respective names, to be (or that purpose expended under the direction of 
trustees to be appointed by the subscribers. The sums subscribed to be 
paid in such monthly installments as the said directors shall think it 
expedient and proper to direct, not exceeding 30 per cent, per month on 
the amount subscribed ; no part, however, 01 any subscription is to be 
called for until the expenditure of the whole shall be authorized by the 
Canal Commissioners, upon the plans herein proposed. 

"Dated, Buffalo, July 2, 1823. 

* In the tnbseqaent report of the Canal Commissioners, they said : — 

** It is important to have at that end a safe harbor, capable, without much expense, of safficient 
enlaigement for the accommodation of all boats and vessels, that a very extensive trade may here- 
after require to enter and exchange their lading there. The waters of Lake Erie ore higher at the 
mouth of the Buffalo creek than they are at Bird Island, or at any point further down the Niagara, 
and every inch gained in elevation will produce a large saving in tne expense of excavation througb- 
ottt the Lake Erie level " 

f According to Mr. Wilkeson's papers, before quoted, the final and formal decision of the Canal 
Commissioners, that the canal should extend to Buffalo, was not given until their report of 1823. 

t This plan was substantially the one finally adopted by the Commissioners. 

Subscriptions to Build a Canal Extension. 95 

" Joseph Dart; Jr., $150; Timothy Page, $100; Stephen Clarke, $100; 
E. Hubbard, $150; J. A. Lazelle, $150; Moses Bristol, $100; R. W. 
Haskins, $100 ; Geo. Stow, $30 ; Abner Bryant, $250 ; H. R. Se3'mour, $250 ; 
G. &T. Weed, $250; Joseph Bull & Co., $150; Abraham Larzalere, $200; 
Hiram Pratt, $200; J. Sweeney, $100 ; N. Darrow,* $25 ; Moses Baker, $200; 
B. Fowler, $25 ; Robert Bush, $50 ; A. Palmer, $100; James Miller, $40; S. 
Matthews, $100; Erastus Gilbert, $100; B. I. Staats, $50 ; Lucius Gould, 
$100; J. E. Marshall, $100; Johnson & Wilkeson, $1,500; Townsend & 
Coit, $1,000; R. B. Heacock, $1,000; E. C. Hickox, $500; Joseph Stock- 
ing, $600 ; Sheldon Chapin & Co., $500 ; Burt & Goodrich, $500 ; Eben- 
ezer Walden, $500; Jonathan Sid way, $500; Oliver Forward, $400; 
Joseph D. Hoyt, $500 ; Royal Colton, $200 ; Ruxton & Hamilton, $100; 
Henry Kip, $59: S. A. Fobes, $100; G. B, Webster, $2^0; William 
Mason, $25 ; total, $11415/' 

In addition to the above, Mr. Louis Le Couteulx gave one-half 
acre of land ** bounded on the canal and extending to the highway." 
The land subscribed by Mr. Le Couteulx was on outer lot No. i. 
Most of the money subscribed on this paper was collected and, although 
it probably did not become necessary as a means of extending the canal 
to Bufialo, it may have been used in harbor improvements. 

In connection with the anxiety in Buffalo, as to their prospects of 
being benefitted through the terminus of the canal at Buffalo creek, a 
petition was presented to the Canal Commissioners, July 23, 1823, by the 
Buffalonians, asking, in substance, that simple justice be done them in 
the premises, and a long editorial appeared in the Patriot about that 
time, deploring the consequences to Buffalo, if the Commissioners con- 
tinued to expend money upon the Black Rock harbor, to the neglect of 
that at the mouth of the creek; the editor concluded, however, with 
the assurance that Buffalo would surely outstrip its rival, no matter 
what course was pursued by the Commissioners. 

For a year or two previous to the time in question, and during the 
agitation. Black Rock had grown faster than Bufialo ; but it reached the 
zenith of its prosperity with the construction of its harbor improve- 
ments ; its pier was gradually destroyed, a large part of it being carried 
away in May, 1826, and hopes of the place becoming a commercial 
port of importance died out-f 

* Tlie only penon in the list of subscribers who is now living. 

t During the speculative period of i835-'36, a project was developed by a number of citizens of 
both Black Rock and Buffalo, which they expected would result in building a city at the former 
place, and in consequent large profits through the sale of lands. One feature of the scheme was 
the construction of a pier or dam extending from Bird Island to a point near the outer end of the 
Buffalo pier. It was expected that this extension would make it possible for vessels to go down 
there sit all times, would improve the Black Rock water-power and prevent the then existing basin 
from falling up with sand and ice. Congress having already granted large appropriations for Blac^ 
Rock improvements, was to be further petitioned for aid in this work, rhe matter went so far thai 
surveys and soundings were made in the summer of 1835. Against this scheme Buffalo at large 
opened a determined opposition, in which Mr. Wilkeson took an active part ; a memorial was 
drawn by him, addressed to Congress, contending that the existing dam at Black Rock bad greatly 

96 History of Buffalo. 

The following statement shows who constructed the principal canals 
and basins in the city. The Erie basin was made by the State, a nominal 
price being paid the owners ol the land occupied by it. The Ohio basin 
was made by the State, as were also the canals leading from the river to 
it and from it to the Hamburg canal. The Blackwell ship canal was 
constructed by the city^ at the expense of the owners of «the lands 
through which it runs. The Hamburg canal was commenced by the 
owners of the lands through which it runs ; subsequently it was assumed 
by the State as a portion of the Erie canal. 

It was in the spring of 1822, that Millard Fillmore first came to 
Buffalo to reside — a man who arose from obscurity and humble surround- 
ings, to the highest position in the gift of his countrymen. Mr. Fillmore 
had paid Buffalo a visit as early as 1818, but returned to finish his appren- 
ticeship in the carding and cloth-dressing business at Newhope ; this 
employment gave him opportunity to teach school and study during the 
winters, which was fully improved. His father removed to Cayuga 
county, and the following winter placed his son in the law office of Judge 
Walter Wood. Young Fillmore purchased the last year of his appren- 
ticeship, and in the spring of 1822, began teaching school in Buffalo. He 
soon entered the law office of Asa Rice and Joseph Clary. In 1823, he 
was admitted to practice in the Court of Common Pleas. He then opened 
an office in East Aurora, where he continued in practice till May, 1830, 
when he formed a partnership with Mr. Clary, in Buffalo. Mr. Fillmore 
was first elected to the Assembly, in the fall of 1828, having been 
admitted as attorney in the Supreme Court, the previous year. He was 
elected to Congress in 1832, when but thirty- two years old, and served 
there four successive terms. He relinquished law practice January i, 

injured the Buffalo harbor, chiefly by causing a rise in the water level, and that the proposed work 
would cause still greater injury, besides being a scheme intended to some extent to enrich its pro- 
jectors. The dam was never built as proposed. At the same time, (January, 1836,) Mr. Wilkeson 
and his friends procured the making of a map showing the proposed improvements in Buffalo har- 
bor ; this map and accompanying address to the citizens of Buffalo, was published as an extra to the 
IVhije^ and Journal. We quote briefly from the address : — 

"Since much has been said for the past few weeks of the necessity of extending Buffalo harbor, 
it may be interesting to some of you to examine the accompanying plan, by which our harbor room 
can be increased to any desirable extent, by excavating slips and basins on ground now unproductive 
to the owners, but which, by the earth excavated from the slips, may be raised above the floods and 
made to furnish valuable sites for docks and warehouses. Should this plan be adopted, it will put at 
rest forever, all apprehensions of want of room. * * * * Those on the south side of 

Buffalo creek will be particularly adapted to the great Western and Canal business, and perhaps 
exclusively used for such.' The proposed increase of room, by enlarging Clark & Skinner's canal, 
and convening the basin on Little Buffalo creek, intended for canal boats, into one for large vessels, 
will still leave this plan subject to enlargement to any extent which may comport with the interests 
of the eastern portion of this citv. " 

The address then reviewed the great benefits to be derived from the proposed improvements, 
and urged the execution of the work upon the people and the Common Council. A comparison of 
this map with Mr. Ball's map of 1825, and of both with the present city maps, gives a clear idea of 
the condition of the harbor at the respective periods, and also indicates how nearly the proposed 
improvements were finally carried out. Much of the harbor improvement indicated on the map of 
1836, was made about the year 1840. The old maps referred to, accompany this volume. 

98 History of Buffalo. 

1848, and assumed the duties of Comptroller of the State. He declined 
a re-nomination for Congress in 1842, and in 1848 was elected President 
of the United States by the Whig party ; he was defeated for the same 
office as the candidate of the " National American" party, in 1856. Mr. 
Fillmore then retired to honorable private life in the city where he had 
so long enjoyed the confidence of his fellow men ; he died March 8, 1874. 

With the fact settled that Buffalo would be the terminus of the canal, 
and the beginning of work on the western section, on the 9th of August, 
1823, the village developed and grew with wonderful rapidity. On the 
1 2th of July, the proud boast was made in one of the newspapers, that 
there were twenty-nine vessels at her wharves at once. Real estate 
changed hands at advanced prices, new buildings were erected, new ves- 
sels added to the lake fleet, and when the opening of the canal was cele- 
brated on the 26th of October, 1825, everything in and near Buffalo 
betokened all the prosperity she has since realized. We have, fortunately, 
in a pamphlet published in that year by S. Ball, a comprehensive and 
clear description of the village as it then existed. It is as follows : — 

" There are at present between 400 and 500 buildings, including dwell- 
ing houses, stores and mechanics' shops ; and accoroing to the census 
taken in January last, there were 2412 inhabitants, which is 317 more 
than the whole township of Buffalo, including the village of Black Rock, 
contained in the year 1820, according to the census then taken. Black 
Rock now contains 1,039 inhabitants. 

" Among the population there are four clergyman, seventeen attor- 
neys, nine physicians, three printers, who give employment to ten hands, 
two bookbinders, four do. ; four goldsmiths, three do. ; three tin and cop- 
persmiths, sixteen do. ; seven blacksmiths, seventeen do. ; two cabinet 
makers, ten do. ; three wheelwrights and coach builders, ten do , two 
chair makers, five do. ; one cooper, three do. ; three hatters, eight do. ; 
two tanners and curriers, nine do. ; five boot and shoe makers, thirty-five 
do. ; two painters, five do. ; four tailors, twenty do. ; one manufacturer 
of tobacco, two do. ; fifty-one carpenters and joiners, nineteen masons 
and stone cutters, three butchers and one brush maker. * * , * 

" There are twenty-six dry goods stores, thirty-six groceries, three 
hat stores, seven clothing do.; four druggist do. ; one hardware do. ; six 
shoe do. ; one looking glass do. ; three jewelry do. ; three printing offices, 
two bookstores and binderies, eleven houses of public entertainment, one 
rope walk; three tanneries, one brewery, one livery stable, eight store 
houses, one custom house, one reading' room, one post office, one public 
library, one masonic hall, and one theatre situated on lot No. 15, which 
has been conducted during the past year with a very considerable degree 
of ability. The public buildings consist of a brick court house, a very 
handsome designed building, but remains unfinished, situated upon an 
eminence on the east side of North Onondaga (Washington) street, front- 
ing Cazenovia Avenue, (Court street) and is on the most commanding 

f round in the village. A stone Gaol, standing on lot No. 185. A market 
ouse situated at the head of Stadnitzka Avenue. The market is well 
supplied as most country villages. * * * The Niagara bank is a large 
bricK building, situated on North Onondaga, between Swan and Eagle 

Buffalo in 1825. 99 

streets. The Buffalo Insurance Office is a large, well-finished three-story 
brick building, on lot No. 35, Willink Avenue. An Episcopal church, 
built of wood, a eood sized and well-finished edifice, standing on lot 42. 
A Presbyterian Meeting House, a very commodious building, situated 
on lot 43. And a convenient Methodist Uhapel, on lot No. 83. There is one 
Young Ladies* School, one Young Gentlemen's Academy, and four com- 
mon schools. The lots Nos. 108, 109, 1 1 1 and 112, are occupied for a bury- 
ing i^round. The space left blank in the plan is lands owned and reserved 
bj Joseph Ellicott, Esq. There are five religious congregations, one 
Episcopalian, one JPresbyterian, one Methodist, one Baptist and one Uni- 
versalist. Among the societies and institutions, there are five religious, 
two Masonic, one Library, one Banking and one Insurance. There are 
four weekly newspapers, to-wit : — The Buffalo Patriot, established in 
1 811; The Buffalo journal, established in 181 5; the Gospel Advocate, 
established in 1823 ; the Buffalo Emporium, established in 1824." 

After a detailed description of the harbor, light house and pier, 
which it is unnecessary to quote, Mr. Ball continues : — 

" The buildings in the vills^e are principally of wood, and not very 
compact, with the exception of Willink avenue ; this street is filled up, 
and is the most business part of the town. Van Staphorst avenue is 
built upon much beyond the extent of the map accompanying this work, 
and is the principle street that is traveled in passing from east to west 

* * * The streets leading along the creeks, (which have not 
yet been favored even with a Dutch name) may be seen in the summer 
season, to exhibit a bustle and hurry of business, not unlike a seaport ; 

* * these streets are well built, with extensive and commodious 
warehouses, and capacious docks, where the shipping lies undisturbed 
and in perfect safety." 

Mr. Ball's pamphlet then records, among other evidences of growth 
and prosperity in the village, the existence of six different mail routes 
leading to and from the place, with nine regular lines of stages arriving 
and leaving every day and the best and most ample accommodations for 

The view for the accompanying engraving of Buffalo harbor from 
Mr. Bair$ pamphlet was taken from the Terrace. The foreground 

* In a letter fiom Hon. Gideon J. Ball to Mr. O. H. Marshall, written in 1876, it g:iyen a brief 
account of Mr. S. Ball's production of the plates from wliich the map and the engraving of Buffalo 
Haibor were printed, as follows : — 

'* S. Ball was not an engraver— never claimed to be— but with a pencil he sketdied well and 
cleverly. After the completion of his drawings, he corresponded with engravers in the city of New 
Vork^ and to his surprise found their chaiges so high and the difficulties of distance so great, that 
for a lime he was disposed to give ud his hobby. After reflection, he resolved to do the work him- 
self. Copper was procured ; the plates were hammered to firmness, and by infinite rubbing, their 
surfaces were finished so that they presented polished planes. Mr. Ball then set himself to the work 
and by persevering effort, succeeded in transferring to the copper the pictures he had drawn." 

The letter then recounts how Mr. Ball then carried his plates to the Office of the Patriot, expect- 
ing to get them printed on an ordinary printing press. When this was found to be impossible, he 
read up on the subject, learned that the work could be done only on a rdller press, and immediately 
set about making one ; a section from a buttonwood tree was procured, two rollers turned and a bed 
plate of iron provided. Ink suitable for the work then, had to be made, and when all was ready the 
printing was done in a very creditable manner, when the circumstances are considered. 











I02 History of Buffalo. 

exhibits the Erie canal, then in an unfinished state, from a point near 
the line of Erie street to near the Little Buffalo creek, above the Com- 
mercial street bridge ; thence the bed of the Little Buffalo creek to the 
Big Buffalo creek. At the left is seen the point on which was after- 
wards erected the warehouse of Joy & Webster. The small building 
on the extreme left stood in Prime street. The next is the " old red 
warehouse," which was occupied by Townsend & Coit ; and below it 
two buildings standing in and near the foot of Commercial street. 
Farther down the harbor is seen a cluster of small buildings, then stand, 
ing on the Johnson & Wilkeson lot. Next and near the center is the 
warehouse then occupied by Hiram Pratt and Asa B. Meech. The 
next and last building on the right, was the- small warehouse used by 
S. Thompson & Co. Between the canal and the buildings is an open 
field. It seems scarcely credible to the present resident of Buffalo that 
this is a correct representation of the harbor and its surroundings less 
than sixty years ago. 

Of the period from the year 1825, to the incorporation of Buffalo as 
a city, in 1832, we have only further to note that it was one of prosperity 
and gradual advancement. Trade, manufactures, commerce and all 
material interests were developed, and building in the village was 
encouragingly extended. The lake and canal fleets were greatly enlarged 
and were sources of a commerce which added to the general business 
activity of the place. The Government, after years of vexatious delay, 
repaid to some extent, the losses occasioned by the war, and a general 
feeling prevailed th^t Buffalo had started upon an era of growth that 
nothing could retard. This feeling was strengthened by a more liberal 
policy which was adopted at that time by the Holland Land Company in 
the sale of their lands, and towards those previous purchasers who were 
indebted to the Company, and were unable to pay. Many such obliga- 
tions were remitted ; for others, wheat, cattle, and other products were 
taken in liquidation, and easy terms were offered to new purchasers. 
Previous to the period in question, the Company had done very little for 
the advancement of Buffalo in any respect. 

During the fall of 1826, the subject of a National road between 
Buffalo and the cit}* of Washington, was agitated, and the leading citizens 
took a lively interest in the matter. A survey had been previously 
ordered by the Secretary of War, and a meeting of the citizens of the 
village was held at the Mansion House, on the 26th of October, at which 
a resolution was passed that a petition be addressed to Congress, asking 
that the work be forwarded. The village trustees were made a corre- 
sponding committee on the subject. 

A company from which much was expected, was incorporated in 
1827 — the Buffalo Hydraulic Company; its capital was $25,000. In 
October of that year the company partially completed and opened their 

Jubilee Water Works— Early Fires. 103 

canal from a branch of Big Buffalo creek, into Little Buffalo creek, near 
the city limits ; this canal was nearly four miles long, and furnished a 
head of sixteen feet. A saw-mill, grist-mill, woolen factory, hat body 
factory, last factory, and a brewery, were built, which were operated 
for some years, and quite a settlement grew up in that vicinity. The 
spread of the city necessitated the subsequent filling up of the canal. 
On the occasion of the opening of the canal, November i, 1827, the 
company furnished the citizens with a big dinner at " Howard & Shaw's 
inn ; a roasted ox, cider, whisky and other articles in abundance," were 

On the fourth of July, 1826, the Jubilee Water Works Company 
began operations for the purpose of supplying the village with water 
from the Jubilee Springs, "a fountain of pure water, on6 and one-half 
miles from Black Rock." Pump logs were laid from the spring to Black 
Rock, during that season. In the winter of 1827, the company was 
incorporated, and contemplated continuing their conduits to Buffalo. 
This was finally done in 1829, the logs being laid down Main street to the 
canal basin. The rates charged were seven dollars for families, and five 
dollars for stores and offices.* 

During the period under consideration the village suffered severely 
from fires, much loss being entailed through the lack of sufficient 
extinguishing apparatus. Early in. the morning of November 14, 1829^ 
eleven stores were burned on the west side of Main street, causing a 
loss of over $25,000. On the 15th of December, 1831, the "Kremlin 
comer" was burned, with a loss of over $20,000. November 14, 1832, 
occurred one of the most disastrous conflagrations in the history of the 
city, destroying several squares of buildings in the heart of the city, on 
Main, East and West Seneca, Pearl and Washington streets, and causing 
a loss of nearly $200,000. 

In September, 1830, a humorously inclined person wrote to the 
editor of one of the local papers an amusing letter asking that the 
streets of the village be properly named and numbered. The old Dutch 
names of the principal streets had been changed in 1825, but they still 
caused some confusion, while no numbers had yet been used on any of 
the streets. By a resolution of the village fathers in March, 1831, the 
numbering, as far as it then extended, was directed to be made on 
substantially the same plan now in use. 

The first directory of the village was published July i, 1832, by L. P. 
Crary, an auctioneer in the place ; it was printed by Day, Follet & Has- 
kins. The entire bpok contained less than sixty pages, thirty of which 
only were filled with names. The colored residents were placed under 
a separate heading. 

* This cbmpftDy is still in existence, and further reference to it will be found in a subsequent 

I04 History of Buffalo. 

A village census in 1830 showed a population of 8,653, upon which 
congratulations were exchanged that it had quadrupled in the preceding 
ten years. 

About the ist of February, [832, the harbor was further extended 
by the construction of a ship canal eighty feet wide and thirteen feet 
deep, from the harbor near the outlet of the creek, across to the Eric 
canal, about 700 yards ; and a smaller canal beginning at Big Buffalo 
creek and extending to Little Buffalo creek. Five hundred men were 
employed upon the work. 

The growth and general activity of the village at this period is 
indicated in some measure by the great number of propositions and 
applications for the opening and extension of streets and improving those 
already open, that were before the Common Council the ist of July, 
1832. These were in part, as follows: — 

" Extension of Delaware and Franklin streets from their terminations 
to the northern bounds of the city. Opening Martin street from Big 
Buffalo creek to Seneca street. Opening Beaver street from Main to 
Martin street. Lay out and open Washington street from present 
terminus to Charles Townsend s line. Open and work Crow street. 
Open an alley from Washingfton eastward between Crow and Seneca, 
Grade and travel the south side of Genesee street from Spruce to Main. 
Grade Washington from Swan street to the court house. Grade Pearl 
street from Huron to Chippewa streets. Grade Main and Canal streets, 
from the Terrace to Big Buffalo creek." 

These improvements and extensions were rapidly followed by others 
at almost every meeting of the Council ; but to give the reader a just 
appreciation of this rapid advancement, it is our duty to record the fact 
that the enforcement of the ordinance prohibiting the running of cows 
in the streets of the city was, upon motion of a member of the Council, 
postponed to January i, 1833. 

Towards the last of the year 1831 the inadequacy of the village char- 
ter for the satisfactory government of the growing community, became 
apparent to the ofiBcials, and doubtless to the inhabitants. Agitation of 
the matter resulted in a meeting which was held about the middle of 
December of that year, at which was appointed a committee charged with 
the important work of drawing a new charter or amending the old one. 
This committee consisted of Charles Townsend, B. D. Coe, Ebenezer 
Walden, H.White, Millard Fillmore, J. Clary, H. Shumway, R. W. Has- 
kins, P. A. Barker, B. Caryl, G. B. Webster, Samuel Wilkeson, D, Tilling, 
hast, J. Stryker, W. Hollister, J. W. Clark, W. Ketchum and M. Baker. 
After proper consideration of the subject, the committee unanimously 
recommended that application be made to the Legislature for an act of 
incorporation for the City of Buffalo. The act was accordingly drawn, 
and no opposition being made, it became a law April 20, 1832. The city 
was then divided into five wards, the boundaries of which are indicated 
on the accompanying map, and contained about 10,000 population. 

io6 History of Buffalo. 

We cannot more appropriately or entertainingly close this chapter, 
than by quoting from the address of E. C. Sprague, Esq., delivered at 
the semi-centennial of the incorporation of the city, Julj" 3d, 1882, in 
which he thus pleasantly alluded to the infant city : — 

" It was a little city erected upon the substance of things hoped for 
rather than of things seen. It contained a few scattered brick buildings 
and perhaps twenty handsome dwellings mostly of wood ; but the bulk 
of the city consisted of frame houses, generally from one to two stories 
high, even on Main street. The ridge of land running from Exchange, 
then known as Crow street, northerly, lifted Main, Franklin and EUicott 
and the intermediate streets out of the bottomless mud east of EUicott 
street, and the miry clay which, west of FrankUn street, absorbed in its 
adhesive depths the wheels of wap^ons and the boots of pedestrians. 
Niagara street, crossed and hollowed by running streams, was sometimes 
impassable to man or beast. Extending from the corner of Main street and 
the Terrace westerly around to Court street was a high bluff, down which 
the boys coasted through Main and Commercial streets. The streets 
were unpaved and the darkness of Main street was made visible by a few 
oil lamps. But all the people knew each other, even in the dark, and 
congregated at the Eagle Tavern, the Mansion House, the Buffalo Hotel, 
and Perry's Coffee House, and, on pleasant days, in Main street on the 
various corners from Court to Seneca streets, cracking jokes and discuss- 
ing politics. ♦ ♦ ♦ The daily street costumes of some of our leading 
citizens, in 1832, was a black or blue dress coat, with costly gilt buttons, a 
voluminous white cravat, a ruffled shirt, accompanied by the ' nice con- 
duct ' of a gold-headed cane. Main street presented a picturesque variety^ 
includine elegantly dressed gentlemen and ladies, blanketed and moc- 
casined Indians, and emigrants in the strange costumes of foreic'n lands. 
Most of the business was done upon the west side of Main street, oetween 
Mohawk and Exchange. Mayor Johnson's stone cottage, now occupied 
by the Female Academy, stood in soUtary state on Delaware Avenue, 
which was devoted for the most part to lumber yards and soap factories. 
The dwellings north of Mohawk street were few and far between. It was 
considered a long walk to Chippewa street, and a hardship to walk as far 
as Tupper street. 

"It appears by the Directory of 1832 that the city contained six 
churches, eight 'institutions,' includinc^ some debating societies, two 
banks, an insurance company, and a library of ' nearly 7oo volumes.' 
I have looked in vain for the record of a single charitable association. 
There were sixteen public and private schools in the city, but the 
scholars in them all would not equal those attending one or two of 
the great schools of the present day. Sixty mails a week during the 
winter and eighty-eight during the season of navigation were ' received, 
made-up and dispatched at the post office.' Of the amount of property 
shipped from this port it is stated that no certain information can be 
obtained, but we are informed that there were ' ten store-houses for the 
transaction of lake and canal business.* Even then, however, the steam- 
boats on the lakes, though few in number, were among the best in the 
country, and were crowded with passengers, who had arrived from 
Albany on the canal, and were seeking a home in Ohio and Michigan. 

" There were some forty manufacturing establishments in the city, 
perhaps altogether not equaling in capital and men employed, one of 
the great establishments of the present day." 

Purchasers of Lots of Original Survey. 107 

The following list gives the number and date of sale by deed* of all 
the lots in the original survey of New Amsterdam, or Buffalo, by the 
Holland Land Company, with the name of the purchaser of each lot : — 
Inner Lot No. i, Zerah Phelps, September 11, 1806. 

2, Samuel Pratt, April 20, 1807. 

3, William Johnston, October 27, 1804. 

4, Jane Eliza Lecouteulx, July 28, 1815. 

5, Richard M. Green, February i, 1805. 

6, Vincent Grant. July 8, 1808. 

7, Samuel Tupper, August 28, 1805. 

8, Oliver Forward, May 24, 18 13. 































































































9, Asahel Adkins, September c, 1806. 
io» John MuUett, November 10, 1812. 

11, John Landis, October 10, 181 1. 

12, and 13, Ebenezer Walden, September i, i8ia 
14, and 15, James W. Stevens, September 10, 1810. 

16, David E. Evans, April 2, 18 10. 

17, Oziel Smith, December 18, 1809. 

18, William Wood, May 23, 1815. 
I9f John Gilbert, February 21, 1816. 

20, Joseph Stocking, August 28, 1826. 

21, Aaron Brink, January 10, 18 11. 

22, Asa Coltrain, May 25, 1814. 

23, Oliver and Susan White, May 7, 1829. 

24, Moses Baker, May 8, 1826. 

25, Elias Ransom, April 23, 1813. 

26, Moses Baker, August 23, 1833. 

27, Jonathan Sid way, January 3, 1826. 

28, Charles Davis, April 8, 1830. 

29, Silas A. Forbes, April 16, 1831. 

30, William Johnston, August 15, 1804. 

31, Erastus Granger, July 31, 1805. 

32, William Johnston, October 27, 1804. 

33, Birdsey Norton, October 7, 1807. 

34, Nathaniel Norton, July 15, 1806. 

35, James McMahan, Mav 17, 1823. 

36, Samuel McConnell, May 19, 1813. 

37, John EUtcott, May 6, 181 1. 

38, Abel M. Grosvenor, May 30, 18 12. 
39i Samuel Pratt, Jr., November 17, i8io. 

40, Cyrenius Chapin, January 17, 18 10. 

41, Eli Hart, September i, 18 10. 

42, St. Paul's Church, June 14, 182a 

43, First Presbyterian Society, December 12, 1820. 

44, and 45, WiUiam Peacock, June 2, i8ia 

46, Elijah Leech, November 10, 18 12. 

47, John Haddock, April 29, 18 14. 

48, Letitia EUicott, May 6, 181 1. 

49, Juba Storrs, January 10, 181 1. 

50, Bennett Stillman, January 16, 181 1. 

51, Benjamin EUicott. May 6, 181 1. 

*Piom KeCchum't " History of Buffalo and the Senecas.'* 

io8 History of Buffalo. 

Inner Lot No. 52, Joseph Ellicott, May 6, 181 1. 

do No. 53, Gamaliel St. John, Januar}' 24, 1810. 

do No. 54, Otis R. Hopkins, April 22, 18 14. 

do No. 55, James Miller, October 25, 1824. 

do No. 56, (part of,) William Wood, June 20, 18 16. 

do No. " •' Elihu Pease, May 7, 1818. 

do No. " " Lester Brace, May 8, 18 18. 

do No. " " Seth Grosvenor, April 24, 181 8. 

do No. " " Oilman Folsom. May 28, 1817. 

do N(5. 57, David Burt, November 20, 1830, Ac, Ac. 

do No. 58, Moses Baker, January i, 1822. 

do No. 59, William J. Wood, May 22, 1823. 

do No. 58, and 59, James Chapin, August $, 181 1. 

do No. 60, Elias Ransom, June 14, 181 1. 

do No. 61, Asa Fox, December 18, 1813. 

do No. 62, Reuben B. Heacock, November 13, 181 3. 

do No. 63, Ebenezer Johnson, April 25, 18 14. 

do No. 64, Henry Roop, August 29, 1831. 

do No. 65, 66, 67 and 68, Benjamin Ellicott, April 2, 1810. 

do No. 69, Smith H. Salisbury, September 16, 1812. 

do No. 70, R. B. Heacock, December 27, 1821. 

do No. 71, Seth Grosvenor, April 21, 18 18. 

do No. 72, Oliver Forward, December 18, 1813. 

do No. 73, Benjamin Haines, Auerust 19, 181 5. 

do No. 74, Nathan Dudley, March 29, 181 5. 

do No. 75, Oilman Folsom, April 2, 1814. 

do No. 76, Cyrenius Chapin, March 8, 181 1. 

do No. JT, Walter P. Groesbeck, May 20, 1813. 

do No. 78, David Burt and G. H. Goodrich, June 24, 1823. 

do No. 79, Levi Strong, April 16, 1810. 

do No, 80, George Keith, April 17, 1810. 

do No. 81, William Baird, May 16, 1814. 

do No. 82, Nathaniel Vosburgh, October 16, 1824. 

do No. 83, Trustees M. E. Church, October 15, 1821. 

do No. 84, Sylvester Mathews, January 20, 1830. 

do No. 85, and part of 86, S. H. Salisbury, March 20, 1820. 

do No. 85 and 86, (part of,^ P. Bennett, February 6, 1826. 

do No. 85 and 86, (part of,) Erastus Gilbert, February 5, 1826. 

do No. 85 and 86, (part of,) Miles P. Squier, July 13, 1825. 

do No. 87 and 88, A. H. Tracy and John Lay, Jr., Dec, 28, 1829* 

do No. 89, (part of,) Georg^e R. Babcock, Novejnber 16, 1830. 

do No. 89, 

do No. 90, 

do No. 90, 

do No. 91, 

do No. 9I1 

10, 1835. 

Archibald S. Clark, September 20, 18 19. 
Barent I. Staats, January 5, 1830. 
Piatt & Clary, September 27, 1829. 
Sylvester Cnamberlin, April 26, 1826, 
Moses Baker, November 17, 1825, and June 

do No. 92, Thomas C. Love, January 20, 1823. 

do No. 93, First Baptist Society, January 17, 1822. 

do No. 94, fpart of,) Denison Lathrop, July 2, 1823. 

do No. 94, (part of,) Walter M. Seymour, January 5, 1827. 

do No. 95 and 96, Ebenezer Johnson, December 20, i«25. 

do No. 97, 98 and 99, G. H. Goodrich, June 6, 1829. 

Purchasers of Lots of Original Survey. 


Inner Lot 












00 and loi, Ebenezer Johnson, August 9, 1824. 
02 and 103, David E. Evans, April 5, 181 1. 

04, Jesse Bivens, September 25, 1813. 

05, Gilnian Folsom, April 24, 1818. 

06, Oliver Newbury, December 13, 1825. 

07, Sally GroosbecK, August 27. 1829. 

07, (part of,) Charles T. Hicks, January 7, 1825. 

08 and 109, quit-claim to Trustees Bu£Falo village, Sep- 
tember 20, 1821, and to city, January 2, 1833. 

10, Amos Callender, December 19, 1816. 

II and 112, Trustees Buffalo village, September 20, 
1 82 1, city of Buffalo, January 2, 1833. 

13, (part of,^ Stephen K. Grosvenor, April 21, 181 8. 

13, (part of,) George W. Fox, January 20, 181 7, 

14, E. Johnson anaS. Wilkeson, January 18, 1825 

15, (part of,^ William Keane, June 8, 1826. 

15, (part of,j S. G. Austin, January 3, 1828. 

16, Henry Lake, December 26, 1809. 

17, R. B. Heacock, May 14, 1814. 

18, John B. Stone, August 8, 1827. 

19, E. Johnson and S. Wilkeson, December 20, 1825. 

20, (jwat oi,) Albert H. Tracy, September 9, 1828. 

20, mart of,jl Daniel Bristol, September 9, 1828. 

21, Joseph Clary, September 28, 1825. 

22, George Stow, April 26, 1826. 

23, James Demarest, February 22, 183a 

24, John Lay, Jr., September i, 1825. 

25 and 126, Ezekiel Folsom, September 12, 1829. 

27, Ebenezer Johnson, July 28, 1826. 

28, Ebenezer Johnson, November 5, 1829. 

29, Jonathan Sidway, November 11, 1828. 

30, 131 and 132, Thomas C. Love and Henry H. Sizer, 

July I, 1828. 
33, (part of.) William Williams, September 10, 1831. 

33, ^rt of,) Roswell Chapin, October 30, 1830. 

34, 135, 136, 137, and 138, Ebenezer Johnson and Samuel 

Wilkeson, January 18, 1825. 

39, Samuel Wilkeson, December 17, 1825. 

40. (part of,^ Moses Ferrin, September 14, 1825. 

40, (part of,). Samuel Wilkeson, September 14, 1835. 

41 Stttd 142, Jonathan Sidway, January 3, 1826. 

43, Guy H. Goodrich, February.22, 1830. 

44 and 145, Belinda Lathrop, April 16, 1825. 

46, Elisabeth A. Barnes, August 20, 1830. 

47 and 148, Christopher and John D. Woolf, March 

26, 1826. 
49, 150 and 151, Emanuel Winter, June 12, 18 12. 
52, 153 and 154, Jeremiah Staats, February 4, 1833. 
55, Barent L Staats, March 12, 1829. 
56 and IS7, Myndert M. Dox, January 5, 1825. 

58, Ontario Insurance Company, June 22, 1825. 

59, William Keane, September 14, 1827. 

60 and 161, Jonathan Sidway, November 11, 1828. 

no History of Buffalo. 

Inner Lot No. 162, Stephen G. Austin, September 13, 1830, 

do No. 163, Walter M. Seymour, January 5, 1827. 

do No. 164 and 165, John C. Lord and liiram Pratt, October 12, 


do No. 166, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174 and 175, Peter 

Huydekoper, August 8, 1825. 

do No. 176, David Reese, June 21, 1808. 

do No. 177, Joseph D. Hoyt, June 21, 181 5. 

do No. 178, Moses Bristol, January 14, 1825. 

do No. 179, (part oD Theodore Cobum, January 13, 1832. 

do No. 179, (part of,) J. and J. Townsend, January 13, 1830, 

do No. 180, Samuel Bell, December 23, 1819. 

do No. 181, William Keane, July 8, 181 5. 

do No. 182, Nathaniel Wil^us, September i, 1831. 

do No. 183, Ebenezer Walden, December o, 1830. 

do No. 184 and 185, Supervisors Niagara County, November 21, 


do No. 186, Horace Griffin, February 27, 1826. 

do No. 187, Noyes Darrow, January 26, 1832. 

do No. 188, H. J. Redfield, March 31, 1843. 

do No. 189 and 190, Jonas Harrison, March 16, 1814. 

do No. 191 and 192, Jonas Harrison, May ii> 1819. 

do No. 193 and 194, Townsend & Coit, December 11, 1816. 

do No. 195 and 196, John E. Marshall, April 12, 1816. 

do No. 197, Seth Grosvenor, November 10, 181 8. 

do No. 198, Gilman Folsom, Jr., July 22, 1830. 

do No. 199, Caleb Gillett, August 31, 1825. 

do Nb. 200, fpart of,^ Gilman Folsom, Jr., January 22, 1828. 

do No. 200, rpart of,) Richard E. Sill, January 22, 1828. 

do No. 201, Denison Lathrop, November 3, 1825. 

do No. 202 and 203, M. A. Andrews, July 26, 1828. 

do No. 204, Eton Galusha, June 21, 1824. 

do No. 203, Henry M. Sizer, Juhr 16, 1833. 

do No. 206, Tpart of,) Elijah D. Efner, November 2, 1822. 

do No. 206, (part of,) Elias Hubbard, November 2, 1822. 

do No. 207, E. Johnson and S. Wilkeson, January 18, 1825. 

do No. 208, E. Johnson and S. Wilkeson, July i, 1824. 

do No. 209, John A. Lazell, January 27, 1826. 

do No. 210 and 211, E. Johnson and S. Wilkeson, January 18, 


do No. 212, Abner Bryant, January 27, 1826. 

do No. 213, Jonathan Sid way, January 31, 1822. 

do No. 214, Elias Hubbard, August 19, 1825. 

do No. 215, Thomas Coatsworth, June 30, 1823. 

do No. 2i6, Ira A. Blossom, May 16, 1827. 
Water Lot No. 5, Abraham Larzelere, November 18, 1823. 

do No. 6, Samuel Barber, October 13, 1823. 

do No. 7, 8 and 9, (part of,) Charles Townsend and George 

Coit, September 26, 1823. 

do No 9. (part of,) Charles Townsend, George Coit, S, Wilke- 

son and E. Johnson, September 26, 1823. 

do No. 10, S. Wilkeson and E. Johnson, November i, 1823. 

do No. II, Jonathan Sidway, April 23, 1824. 

Purchasers of Lots of Original Survey. 


13, Hiram Pratt, September 24, 1823. 

14, Elisha C. Hickox, September 24, 1823. 

15 and 16, S. Thompson, H. Thompson and J. L. Barton, 
December 2, 1823. 

17, G. B. Webster, February 18, 1824. 

18, 19 and 20, Samuel Wilkeson, May 8, 1828. 
I, Ix>uis LeCouteulx, December 6, 1821. 

2 and 3, Benjamin Ellicott, April 2, 18 10. 

4, Joshua Gillett, September i, 1810. 

7, 8, 9 and 10, William Peacock, April 2, i8io, 

11, David E. Evans and J. Ellicott, Jr., September 21, 


12, Asa Coltrin, May 25, 18 14, 

13, David E. Evans and J. Ellicott. Jr., September 2t, 


14, Asa Coltrin, May 25, 18 14. 

15 and 16 David E. Evans and J. Ellicott, Jr., Septem- 
ber 21, 1821. 

17, Henry Ketchum, June 18, 181 2. 

18, Stephen Stillman, February 15, 181 1. 

19, E. Ensien, July 8. 18 13. 

20, C. R. Sharp. May 10, 1816. 

21, Samuel Tupper,'May 5, 1812. 

22, " " June 21, 1815. 

23 and 24, Juba Storrs, Januarv 30, 181 1. 

25, Louis LeCouteulx, November 22, 181 5. 

26, John White, April 7, 18 10. 

27, John B. Ellicott, Jr., and David E. Evans, September 
21, 1821. 

28, Sylvester Mathews, October 5, 1825. 

29, Ebenezer Johnson, August 9, 1824. 

30, " " November 14, 1814. 

31, John Desparr, April 20, 1807. t 

32, Gilman Folsom, September 28, 1829. 

33, Jabez Gpodell, April 23, 1830. 

34, Thomas Day, April 23, 1830. 

35, Louis LeCouteulx, May 11, 1816. 

36, (part of) Joseph and Benjamin Ellicott, Feb. 29, 1812. 

36, " United States, September 29, 1819. 

37, •' Joseph and Benjamin Ellicott, Feb. 19, 1812. 

37, " Horatio J. Stow, July 16, 1844. 

38, 3p, 40, and part of 41, Joseph and Benjamin Ellicott, 
February 29, 1812. 

41 and 42, (part of,) Letitia M. Bliss, June 14, 1837. 
42, (part of,) 43, 44, 45 and 46, Joseph and Benjamin Elli- 
cott, February 29, 1812. 
47, 48, 49 and 50, Elijah Leech, July 19, 181 ^ 

52, Jonathan Sid way, November 11, 1828. 

53, Hiram Pratt, December i, 1830. 

54, " " April II, 1833. 

55 and 56, Joseph Ellicott, February 28, 181 1. 
57, (part of,) Jonathan Sidwa}^, November 11, 1828. 
'• * Sherwood & White, September 29, 1829. 

Water Lot No. 









Outer Lot No. 

















































































112 History of Buftalo. 

Outer Lot No. 58, Theodore Cobum, November 27, 1826. 

do No. 59, (part of,) George Stow, December 29, 1825. 

do No. 59, " Heman B. Potter, September 27, 1827. 

do No. 60, 61,62 and 63, Joseph D. Hoy t, December 26, 1825. 

do No. 64, Elijah D. Efner, December 21, 1821. 

do No. 65, Stephen Clark, March 9, 1832. 

do No. 66 and 67, Thomas Coatsworth, August 25, 1830. 

do No. 68, Martin Daley, November 29, 1830. 

do No. 69, C. Tappan and J. Mansfield, November 27, 1829. 

do No. 70, Stephen Champlin, May 23, 1825. 

do No. 71 aiid 72, Robert Pomeroy, April 6, 1820. 

do No. 73, Hiram Hanchett, June 9, 1810. 

do No. 74,. Elijah Leech, December 23, 1808. 

do No. 75, Ebenezer Walden, Novenitrer 26, 18 17. 

do No. 76 and jj^ Zenas Barker, August i, 1814. 

do No. 78, Vincent Grant, July 21, 1807. 

do No. 79 and 80, William Grant, July 8, 1808. 

do No. 81 and 82, J. M. Landon. July"28, 1825. 

do No. 83, Jane E. LeCoiiteulx, July 28, 1825. 

do No. 84, Isaac Davis, January 29, 18 14. 

do No- 85, William Johnston, February '5, 1804. 

do No. 86, Hydraulic Association, November 2t, 1827. 

do No, 87, Amasa Ransom, November 20, 1824. 

do No. 88 and 89, Apollos Hitchcock, December 6, 1809- 

do No. 90, 91 and 92, Erastus Granger, December 31, 1809, 

do No. 93, William Johnston, October 27, 1804. 

do No. 94 and 95, R. B. Heacock, December 15, 1826. 

do No. 96, Townsend & Coit, May 31, 181 3. 

do No. 97 and 98, Noah Folsom, January 12, 1825. 

do No. 99, 100, loi, 102 and 103, Samuel Pratt, June 7, 1813. 

do No. 104, Joseph EUicott, October 2, 18 10. 

do No. los, Hiram Pratt, July 21, 1829. 

do No. 106, Silas A. Fobes, April 16, 1831. 

do No. 107, Noyes Barrow, January 13, 1830. 

do No. 108, (part of,) Nathaniel Vosburgh, December ii, 1829. 

do No. io8 and 109, (part of,) John Lay, Jr., July 27, 1827. 

do No. 109, (part ofj Ebenezer Walden, April 4, 1828. 

do No. no, David E. Evans, September 10, 1821. 

do No, III, " " April 5, 181 1. 

do No. 112, Joseph Stocking and Joseph Dart, September 8, 1829. 

do No. 113 and 114, G. H. Goodrich, October 19, 1830. 

do No. 115, E. A. Biffelow, November 30, 1827. 

do No. 116, James W. Stevens, April 2, 18 10. 

do No. 117, Heman B. Potter, May 18, 181 5. 

do No. 118, David E. Evans, April 5, 181 1. 

do No. 119, Isaac Davis, October 9, 1812. 

do No. 120 and 121, M. A. Andrews, July 28, 1831. 

do No. 122, (part of) Walter M. Seymoui, January 5, 1827. 

do No. 122, " Jonas Harrison, May 17, 1814. 

do No. 123, " Ira A. Blossom, June 30th, 1828. 

do No. 123, " Oziel Smith, June 26, 181^5. 

do No. 124, Oziel Sinith, February 26th, 181 3. 

do No. 125, (part of,) William Williams, April 13th, 1830. 

First City Officers. 113 

Outer Lot No. 125, (part of,) Ira A. Blossom, June 30th, 1828. 

do No. 126, Isaac Davis, October pth, 1812. 

do No. 127, 128, 129, and 130, M. A. Andrews, July 28th, 1831. 

do No. 131 and 132, M. A. Andrews, March 19th, 1828. 

do No. 133 and 134, James Rough, October 9th, 1812. 

do No. 135, JabezGoodcll, November nth, 1834. 

do No. 136, " " June 14th, 1817. 

do No. 137, " " July 22d, 1825. 

do No. 138, Jas. and Henry Campbell, June 22d, 1815. 

do No. 139, Eli Hart, April ist, 181 5. 

do No. 140, Amos Teft, October 23d, 181 5. 

do No. 141, Matilda Sharp, July 26th, 18 14. 

do No. 142, Philo Andrews, April i6th, 1810. 

do No. 143, Henry Lake, March i6th, 18 10. 

do No. 144, Samuel Helm, December 22d, 1809. 

do No. 145, Jabez Goodell, April 8th, 18 16. 

do No. 146, " " July 22d, 1825. 

do No. 147, " " December 1st, 1823. 

do No. 148, Silas A. Fobes, November 8th, 1834. 

do No. 149, James Sweeney, Aufi^ust 23d, 1825. 

do No. 150 and 151, Walter M. Seymour, December ist, 1827. 



Rnt Election of City Officen— The Cholera Epidemic of 1832— Incidents of the Scouise— The 
Bomrd of Health and '* the Old Sexton" — First Meeting of the Board of Aldermen — The 
Ptaiic of i835-'36 — The City in X836— The Patriot War ~ Death of Dr. Chapin — Reor- 
ganizatioa of the School System — Establishment of .a Recorder's Court and the Superior 
Court — The Great Flood of 1844 — The " UoiTenity of Buffalo " — The Cholera Epidemic 
of 2849^ Enlargement of the City in 1853 — The Financial Crisis of 1857 ~- The War of 
the Rebellion — Comparison of the City of 1862 with that of 1836— The Park System— 
City Impforements. 

THE preceding chapter finished the history of Buffalo as a village 
and noted the first step In its existence as a city under the roost 
auspicious prospects. The first election of city officers was held 
May 28th, 1832, resulting as follows: — 
Mayor — Ebenezer Johnson.* 
Clerk — Dyre Tillinghast. 
Treasurer — Henry It. Seymour. 
Attorney — George P. Barker. 
Surveyor — J. J. Baldwin. 
Street Commissioner — Edward Baldwin. 
Chief Engineer Fire Department — Isaac S. Smith: 

• Eheneser Johnson died at Tellico Plains, Tenn., Febmaiy 8th. 1840, aged 81 years. 

114 History of Buffalo. 


First Ward — Isaac S. Smith, Joseph W. Brown. 

Second Ward-^Jno. G. Camp, Henry Root. 

TAird IVard—T)2Lvid M. Day, Ira A. Blossom. 

Fourth fVard— Henry White, Major A. Andrews. 

Fi/tA Ward— Ehcnczer Walden, Thos. C. Love. 

The boundaries* of the five city wards as established by the charter, 
were as follows : — 

'* First Ward— All that part of the city which lies south and east of 
the following lines, viz., begmning at a point in said reservation, where 
a line drawn through the center of Excnange street, would strike said 
reservation ; thence along said line to the center of Exchange street ; 
thence proceeding westwardly along the center of said street to Caze- 
novia Terrace; thence to tne center of Cazenovia Terrace; thence 
westwardly and northerly alone the center of said Terrace to the center 
of Erie street ; thence along the center of Erie street to the center of 
Erie canal ; thence along the center of the canal to the west bounds of 
York street ; thence down the west bounds of York street to Lake Erie; 
thence due west to the State line. 

*' Second Ward— All that part which lies east of the center of Main 
street, and north of the center of Exchange street, and north of a line 
drawn through the center of Exchange street to the said reservation, 
and south of the center of Eagle street, and south of a line to be drawn 
in continuation of the north line of Eagle street, to the Buffalo creek 

" TAird Ward— All that part of the city lying westerly of the center 
of Main street and northeasterly of the bounds of the First Ward, and 
southeasterly of the northwesterly bounds of said York street, and southr 
westerly of the center of Niagara street. 

" FourtA Ward— All the residue of said city, lying east of the 
center of Main street, and north of the center of Eagle street. 

" Fi/tA Ward— All the residue of said city, lying west of the center 
of Main street, and northeasterly of the center of Niagara street." 

Early in the summer of 1832 an unwelcome visitor made its appear- 
ance in the city, leaving sorrow in its track and producing a marked 
and depressing effect upon all kinds of business enterprise ; this was the 
terrible and fatal scourge, the Asiatic cholera, which swept over the 
entire country during that year. Although Buffalo suffered less from 
the epidemic than many of her sister cities, probably on account of 
efficient work by her new Board of Health and her healthful surround- 
ings, still the dreaded and mysterious destroyer crossed hundreds of 
thresholds in the young city leaving mourning and dismay in many 
households. In midsummer during a portion of July and August, there 
were one hundred and eight-four cases in Buffalo, eighty of which 
proved fatal. A brick building on Niagara street was taken for a 
hospital. In July it was deemed necessary to close the '' public burying 

* These boundaries were greatly changed when the corporation was enlarged in 1853, ^ shown 
by comparison of the map of the city previous to that date, (printed herein) and the present-city 

The Cholera Et'iDEinic of 1832. 115 

ground/' (which embraced the present site of the crty and county 
building). This was done, and nine acres purchased near " the north- 
east bounds of the city/' on farm lot No. 30 ; a portion of this was set 
apart for the Catholics. Daily bulletins were issued by the Board of 
Health, showing that during the summer the new cases of the disease 
daily ranged from one to ten. The Board of Health consisted of Pr. 
Ebenezer Johnson, (the Mayor), Lewis F. Allen, and Roswell W. Has- 
kins. Dr. Marshall was city physician, and Loren Pierce was city 
undertaker. Mr. Allen still lives in Buffalo and vividly recollects the 
gene r al feeling of fear and anxiety which pervaded all classes during 
that season ; the venerable gentleman also relates some ghastly anec- 
dotes of the experiences of himself and his brother officials, while in the 
discharge of their duties. Mr. Haskins was a nervous man, impulsive 
and quick in action, while Mr. Pierce was his opposite in temperament, 
quiet and methodiod, doing his gloomy duty by the dead with a grim 
composure that was admirable, if not almost amusing. One night, Mr. 
Allen had retired at his home on Main street, worn out with his unusual 
labors, when a terrific thunderstorm arose. Near midnight he was 
awakened by a rapping at his window. Going to his door he met Mr. 
Kerce. The storm was at its height ; the lightning flashed across the 
heavens and thunder rolled almost continuously. The appearance of 
the undertaker at such an hour on such a night, awakened in Mr. Allen's 
nEHnd apprehensions of some new calamity. 

" For heaven's sake, Pierce/' he exclaimed, *• what is the matter ? 
Is there any new trouble ? " 

'' No, nothing new," replied the tranquil undertaker ; ** I have six 
bodies in the wagon out here, on my way to the grave-yard, and I 
thought I would call and tell you that everything is all right." 

** And have you called me up on such a night as this, only to tell me 
that you are taking six bodies to the grave-yard in a storm that threatens 
to drown the city ? You don't mean to say that you are alone ?" 

'' O, no," replied Pierce, " Black Tony is out there holding the horses ; 
I guess we can manage it," and off into the storm and darkness went the 
faithful man, with his solitary assistant, to bury his harvest of the dead. 
It was, d o ubtl es s , an all night task, yet Mr. Pierce* was at his post in 
the meeting of the Board at eight o'clock the next morning, placid and 
deliberate as usual. 

But the fatal scourge was conquered at last, (although it appeared 
again in a less destructive character in 1834,) and with its disappearance 
men again fumed their attention to the business of life, and the young 
city assumed more than its former activity. The political excitement 
that attended the Anti-Masonic movement, had passed its zenith, which 

« Mr. Pierce, the " Old Sexton," died May H* t^V^ It has been laid that he had bnried 3S,ooo 
bodies ia Bnffala 

ii6 History of Buffalo. 

fact also inured to the business prosperity of the community. The great 
project of a railroad from Buffalo to the Hudson river was beginning to 
excite discussion, and railroads to other points were suggested ; these 
and kindred projects formed one element in the flood of speculation and 
inflation that was soon to sweep over the country. 

The first meeting of the new Board of Aldermen of the cit}' was 
held June 4, 1832, at which the Mayor appointed the following standing 
committees : — 

Finance — Walden, Blossom, Camp and White. 

Fire and Water — Smith, Root, Brown and Day. 

Streets, Alleys^ Canals and Ferries — Andrews, Camp, Brown, Blos- 
som and Love. 

Police — Love, Root, Day, Smith and Andrews. 

Wharves and Public Lands — White, Walden, Blossom and Love. 

John W. Beals and Samuel Jordan were appointed Assistant Engi- 
neers, and David M. Day was made City Printer. 

The city government being thus established, Buffalo continued upon 
its brief period of outward prosperity and brilliant expectations. The 
tide of commerce flowed in from the West, and the products of that 
rapidly developing section found their way to the Queen City and thence 
into the Erie canal; the boats that floated down that great commercial 
highway, laden with grain, came back crowded with emigrants, many of 
whom settled in and around Buffalo. The fierce rivalry that had formerly 
existed between the city and Black Rock had become, to a great extent, 
a thing of the past; on the 29th of October, 1833, grading was begun on 
a horse railroad to connect the two places ; two hundred rods of the 
road were completed in December, and a car began running ; the cost 
of this road when finished was about $15,000.* 

During the year 1833, transactions in red estate were numerous and 
prices somewhat advanced — the first premonition of that marvellous 
tide of speculation that swept over the land» reaching its climax in 
1835-36, involving almost the entire community in ruin or heavy loss. 
The city increased in population from 8,653 in 1830, to 15,661 in 1835; 
this rapid growth, with the inflation of the existing currency and the 
constantly increasing prices of real estate, combined to turn the heads 
even of steady-going business men ; everybody turned speculator, and a 
large majority of the numerous real estate transactions were made on 
credit. The crash came in 1836, with all the disastrous consequences 
detailed in a subsequent chapter ; this portion of the country has never 
experienced so serious a financial crisis, and Buffalo, from her commer^ 
cial importance and the eagerness with which her citizens rushed into 
land speculation, was peculiarly unfitted to meet the shock. All through 

* At the Uanch of the new steamer, Generai Porter^ on Sfttordmj, November 33, 1833, the fol- 
lowing toest was given by Dr. Chapin : — 

** Buffalo and Black Rock— one and indivisible ; mav their citisens oontiniie to be nnited in 
enterprise and deeds of benevolence as long as Lake Erie bears a wave*" 

Buffalo in 1836. 117 

the year 1837, prices went down lower and lower, while bankruptcy and 
financial loss generally prevailed on all sides ; recovery from this calam- 
ity was the slow process of years. 

In the year 1836, so rapid had been the march of improvement, there 
were fifty-two miles of pavement* laid in the city, and the sewerage sys- 
tem was well inaugurated on some of the prominent street2». 

In a paper read before the Historical Society in June, 1880, Rev. 
George W. Hosmer thus pleasantly referred to the city at this time : — 

*' So came the Buffalo of 1836 ! We can see the old signs now along 
the docks and upon Main street — Joy & Webster, Sheldon, Thompson 
& Co., Smith & Macy, Wilkeson & 6eals, Townsend & Coit, Hollister 
Brothers, Oliver Forward, Reuben B. Heacock, Judge Love, Dr. John- 
son, Pratt 8l Co., William Williams, S. N. Callender, N. P. Sprague, 
General Potter, Albert H. Tracy, Millard Fillmore, N. K. Hall, Ira A. 
Blossom, H. K. Smith, Barker, Hawley & Sill, and physicians and min- 
isters. I should like to call all their names as they come up to me. I 
have always thought it was a remarkable company of men here in Buffalo 
in that first period of the city. They had unusual practical force, and 
there were many among them with uncommon intellectual power. They 
compare favorably with the builders of other young cities of the West, 
whom I have known. And there were here in Buffalo, fortj years ago, 
a company of women superior as the men. The new life quickened them 
and gave spirit and force to the culture and habits they brought with 
them from older communities." 

Amendments to the act incorporating the city were passed in 1837, 
in relation to the schools, regelating the grade of the railroad within the 
city limits, establishing a workhouse and otherwise perfecting the munici- 
pal government In spite of the '* hard times " then prevailing, a com- 
pany was formed, and a charter obtained for building a macadam road 
from Buffalo to Williamsville ; the road was completed a year or two 

In the winter of 1837-38, what was known as the " Patriot War " 
created considerable excitement in Buffalo. This war was the result of 
Canadian discontent with the English government, finally breaking out 
in open rebellion. A great deal of sympathy with the " Patriots " was 
felt here ; public meetings were held, which were acldressed by promi- 
nent citizens, and the United States Marshal appointed thirty deputies 
from among the leading men of Buffalo, to prevent violations of neu- 
trality between the two countries. The struggle ended about the mid- 
dle of January, 1838 ; its history in detail has already been given in the 
preceding volume. 

The winter of i838-*^9, is memorable as one of the mildest ever 
known along the lake country. In participation in the ", Patriot War," 
the steamboat Robert Fulton went up the lake in January — a sigfht seldom 

* Mr. Lewis F. Allen states that when be arrived in Buffalo, in iSa?, there was not a rod of 
pavement or sidewalk in the^lace. 

ii8 History of Buffalo. 

In February, 1839, I^^* Cyrenius Chapin, having just revived his 
aged spirits sufficiently to express his sympathy with the rebellious Cana- 
dian subjects, in public speeches and otherwise, was overtaken by his last 
sickness. He died, and was buried with military honors on Washington's 
birthday, his funeral being attended by a vast concourse of people of the 

It was during this period just considered, when a war seemed prob- 
ablej and the country had not yet escaped from its financial troubles, 
that the school system of Buffalo was reorganized. The public schools 
thus far had been ordinary district schools, unsuited to a growing city, 
and attended principally by children of the poorer classes. But in the 
financial crash of 1837, many private educational institutions went down 
and the people were compelled to turn their attention to the neglected 
public schools. Under a law passed early in 1838, the entire school sys- 
tem of the city was reorganized on a plan similar to that now in force. 
Oliver G. Steele was appointed superintendent, and much of the work 
incident upon putting the new system into operation, devolved upon 
him. The principal features of the reorganized system were large 
schools, divided into departments, thorough supervision by the superin- 
tendent, and substantially free instruction to all children residing in the 
city. In the summer of 1839, ^^ l^ss than six new school buildings were 
erected under Mr. Steele's supervision, and competent teachers were 
employed in all the districts. There was some opposition to this work, 
mainly on account of the^ heavy expenditure ; but as a whole, the people 
supported the movement. This subject is fully treated in a subsequent 

By the act of the Legislature passed in 1839, a Recorder's Court 
was created for the City of Buffalo, and the appointment of the Recorder 
was vested in the Governor. The term of office was four years, and it 
was held by Horatio J, Stow from 1840 to 1844 ; Henry K. Smith from 
1844 to 1848. By the constitution adopted in 1846, the office was made 
elective by the people, under which it was held by Joseph G. Masten 
from 1848 to 1852; George W. Houghton from 1852 to 1854. An act 
was passed in 1854 by which this court was reorganized and merged 
into the present Superior Court, with three Judges, whose term of office 
was fixed at six years. Provision was also made that the incumbent of 
the office of Recorder at the time 6f the reorganization, should serve as 
one of the Judges of the Superior Court for the remaining portion of the 
term for which he had been elected. Recorder Houghton was, there- 
fore, under this arrangement, entitled to serve two years as Judge of the 
new court. At the first election under the new law, George W. Clinton 
and Isaac A. Verplanck were chosen as the other Judges, and upon 

* FttKther reference to Dr. Cbapin, will be found in the chapter on the Buffalo Medical pro- 




Judges of the Supreme Court. 119 

casting lots for the long and the short terms, Judge Clinton secured the 
full term of six years, and Judge Verplanck that of four years. The 
Judges of the reorganized court have been : — 

George W.Houghton, 1854 to 1856 ; I. A. Verplanck, 1854 to 1858 ; 
George W. Clinton, 1854 to i860 ; Joseph G. Masten, 1856 to 1862 ; I. A. 
Verplanck, 1858 to 1864; George W. Clinton, i860 to 1866; Joseph G. 
Masten, 1862 to 1868; I. A. Verplanck, 1864 to 1870; George W. Clinton, 
1866 to 1872; Joseph G. Masten, 1868 to 1871 ; James M. Humphrey, 
1871 to 1872; James Sheldon, 1872, (now in office;) I. A. Verplanck, 1870 
to 1873; James M. Smith, 1873 to 1874; James M. Smith, 1874, (now in 
office;) George W. Clinton, 1872 to 1878; Charles Beckwith, 1878, (now 
in office.) 

Judge Masten died in the spring of 1871, after serving two terms and 
a half, or fifteen years, and James M. Humphrey was appointed by Gov- 
ernor Hoffman, to fill the vacancy. At the succeeding election in Novem- 
ber, 1871, James Sheldon was elected as the successor of Mr. Humphrey. 

Judge Verplanck died in the spring of 1873, aftfer serving two full 
terms, and two fractional terms, or a little more than eighteen years, and 
James M. Smith was appointed to the vacancy, by Governor Dix. At 
the succeeding election in November, 1873, Judge Smith was chosen his 
own successor. 

Judge Clinton was retired under the Constitution, on account of age, 
on the 31st day of December, 1877, ^uid was succeeded by Judge Beck- 
with, who was elected at the November election preceding. 

By the Constitutional Amendment of 1870, the term of office was 
extended to fourteen years, and it is also provided that the judges shall 
be elected for the full term of fourteen years, whether chosen to fill a 
vacancy, or otherwise. 

The clerks of the court have been: M. Cadwallader, 1839 to 1844; 
Nelson Ford, 1844 to 1846 ; C. M. Cooper, 1846 to 1848 ; William Davis, 
1848 to 185 1 ; Jared S. Torrance, 1851 to 1856; Dyre Tillinghast,* 1856 
to 1862; Thomas M. Foote, 1862 to 1863; Amos A. Blanchard, 1863 to 
1865 ; John C. Graves, 1875, and now holding the office. 

Previous to the year 1840, the Mayors of Buffalo were chosen by the 
Common Council. In the winter of 1839, ^ ^^^ ^^^ passed providing 
that the Mayors should thereafter be elected by the people. Sheldon 
Thompson was the first mayor elected under that law, in 1840. 

In May, 1842, an agreement was finally consummated, after consid- 
erable negotiation, the details of which have been given in the preced- 
ing volume, by which the ^ndhins gave up their Buffalo Creek reserva- 
tion and other lands, to the Ogden Company, and during the years 1843 
and 1844, the Buffalo Creek Indians departed from the lands where they 

* Mr. Tiilingfaast was the £nt city clerk of Buffalo ; he died March i8, 1872, aged sixty-four 

I20 History OF Buffalo. 

had dwelt for more than sixty years, and which had been a favorite place 
of assemblage for the nation for nearly two centuries. From that time 
to the present, little has been seen in Buffalo of the dusky faces and 
stately forms of the race that made its site their home long before the 
ancestors of the city's present proud occupants looked forth upon the 
blue waters of the great lake. The stem and majestic chiefs, the lithe 
and graceful young braves, the quaintly dressed squaws and their 
oflFspring, once so conspicuous in the streets of Buffalo, are gone — 
whither; before what is called "the march of civilization," they have 
disappeared — a fate that cannot fail to awaken saddening reflections in 
the earnest and impartial mind, especially must this be true of those older 
residents of the city, who mingled with the once possessors of the soil 
and found much to admire in many of their untaught natures. 

On Friday, October i8, 1844, the city was visited by a most remark- 
able and destructive gale, accompanied by an overflow of the lake. 
During the day a fresh wind had blown from the northeast. About 
eleven o'clock in the evening it shifted to the southwest and west and 
soon arose to a terrific gale which continued all night. The waters of 
the lake, which had been driven back by the northeast wind, were blown 
down upon the city causing a rise of two feet more than was ever known 
before or since. The damage to shipping and to the city was immense, 
and what was still more deplorable, between thirty and forty lives were 
lost, mostly by drowning. About one-third of the length of the stone pier 
was washed out ; the wharves were badly damaged, and the flats east of 
Main and south of Seneca street presented a scene of wreck and desola- 
tion; stranded scows and canal boats, lumber and other debris were 
scattered in all directions; the brig Ashland was thrown upon the 
south pier ; the steamer G. Dole was thrown high and dry into Ohio 
street, while just above her lay the Bunker Hill ; the Columbus lay 
near Michigan street above high water mark, and the United States 
steamer Albert was high and dry below the pier, and a large number 
of canal boats were driven up on the land, from the Hydraulics to the 
bounds of the city. The loss of shipping on the lake was very heavy. 
Numerous buildings in the city were demolished or badly damaged. 
The engine-house of the Buffalo & Attica railroad was blown down, 
as was also the glass factory of H. Hodge & Co., — while chimneys 
were demolished, cellars were filled and the shanties and small houses 
of poor people near the lake were destroyed and washed away. The 
damage in the city was estimated at as much as two hundred thousand 
dollars. Two girls were drowned in the' basement kitchen of Huff's 
(now Moeller's) hotel, 95 Main street, and eight persons were drowned 
near Wilkeson's foundry, which stood near the site of the Wilkeson 
elevator. The calamity was an appalling one and its disastrous effects 
were only partially alleviated by the prompt action of the people 

The Cholera Scourge of 1849. r2i 

of the city in relieving the distress of the sufferers, through liberal 

In the year 1845 ^be population of the city had increased to 29,773, 
from 18,213 in 1840, and the place had to a great extent recovered from 
the effects of the financial crisis of ten years before; in the rush of 
emigration westward and the general development of the country, that 
event was nearly forgotten by the masses of the people. The great elevator 
system, which has worked wonders for the commerce of Buffalo, was 
inaugurated by Joseph Dart in 1843, and was just beginning to bear its 
legitimate fruits. Fleets of grain-laden vessels, growing more and more 
numerous with each year, poured their golden cargoes into the boats, 
bins and elevators of Buffalo harbor, whence they were shipped forward 
to tide-water, leaving their tithe in the growing city and filling her 
wharves and streets with thousands of busy men. New streets were 
laid out and old ones were extended farther into the surrounding 
country; new buildings of better and more substantial architecture, 
arose on every hand, while municipal institutions and departments were 
improved and extended. 

It was in this year (1845) ^hat the grand project of the '* University 
of Buffalo " was inaugurated ; this institution was intended to rival the 
greatest universities of the country. The medical department was 
organized in August, 1846, as the Buffalo Medical College. Under the 
direction of the eminent physicians who then practiced here, the institu- 
tion soon took a foremost position, which it has ever since held ; but the 
university project ended with the establishment of the medical college. 

The cholera visited Buffalo for the third time in May, 1849, ^^ its 
most malignant form. On the last of May, one hundred and thirty-four 
cases had been reported, with fifty-one deaths. From that date down to 
about September 10, the scourge swept over the city, the number of 
cases daily averaging from fifteen to nearly one hundred, and the deaths 
from one to twenty-five. The total number of cases in the city was a 
little over three thousand, and the deaths nearly 900. In spite of 
vigorous action on the part of the Board of Health, as well as among 
the people at large, the career of the fatal disease was an appalling 
one and spread mourning and anxiety through the entire community. 
Many left the city for refuge in the purer air of the country, while the 
inhabitants of the surrounding towns dreaded the approach of residents 
of Buffalo. The disease carried off many prominent people, both in the 
city and country. 

About the year 1850, the growth of Buffalo had been so rapid and 
the future of the city looked so promising, the project of enlarging its 
boundaries began to be discussed. At that time the town of Black Rock 
hemmed in the city on the landward side, as indicated on the map of the 
territory embraced in the first city limits. The movement towards 

122 History of Buffalo. 

enlargement* took definite shape in April, 1853, when a new charter was 
granted under the provisions of which the entire town of Black Rock was 
absorbed and the enlarged city divided into thirteen wards. The new 
municipal domain was about nine miles long, north and south, by from 
three to five miles in width. The first election under the new boundaries 
was for the year 1854; the mayor, comptroller, treasurer, attorney, 
surveyor, street commissioner, superintendent of schools, overseer of the 
poor, were elected for two years and the mayor ceased to be a member 
of the Common Council, as had previously been the case, the presiding 
officer of that body being selected from the members. Eli Cook (demo- 
cratic) was elected mayor for 1854-55. 

The new charter changed the boundaries of the wards substantially 
to their present location, with the exception of the seventh and twelfth 
wards, which were extended to their present limits in 1870. A com- 
parison of the map of the city before it was enlarged, (in this volume,) 
with the present city map, will indicate to the reader the character of 
the changes in the ward boundaries. 

In 1857 the era of prosperity which Buffalo had enjoyed for several 
years was interrupted. The overdoing of business, speculation and gen- 
eral financial recklessness, with inflation and depreciation of the currency, 
produced their natural result. While this crisis and panic was not nearly 
so disastrous as its predecessor of twenty years before, still it caused a 
great deal of ruin and general " hard times," the effects of which were 
seriously felt for two or three years after. A subsequent chapter devoted 
to financial matters treats more fully of this topic. 

On the 1 5th of April, 186 1, the Buffalo morning newspapers were 
ablaze with the tidings of the bombardment of Fort Sumter. The effects 
of that event, as witnessed in this city, were similar to those in other 
localities. Business almost ceased. War was the topic on every tongue. 

* Although the city had shown remarkable development during the few years just preceding 
1852, yet that some portions of it fell very far short of their present condition will be inferred from 
the following extract Irom the Historical Address of Charles E. West, LL. D. » at the Twenty-fifth 
Anniversary of the Buffalo Female Academy, in 1875 :— 

* * The older persons of my audience will remember that no improvements had been made in 
this part of the city, (the vicinity of the Female Academy). Our beautiful Delaware Avenue was 
not paved— a broken plank sidewalk was all it could boast ; no water or gas pipes had been laid— a 
few miserable oil-lamp lights only served to make the darkness more hideous. The cottage stood 
with a fine yard of evergreens and two stately willows as sentinels in front— its garden and low, homely 
sheds in rear ; while beyond was an unsightly piece of ^und, covered with rubbish, called a park, 
the common rendezvous of hogs, geese and dirty children. Such was the aspect and condition of 
things, when the Acadcmv began its work. Everything had to be done. How different the Dela- 
ware Avenue of to-day from the Delaware Avenue of twenty-five years ago ! Just north of us, on 
one side, were a lumber vard, a brick yard and a soap factory, while further up on the other, were a 
lead factory and some dilapidated military barracks. Scarcely a house of any pretension was to be 
teen — but now how changed ! The wand of the fairy magician has wrought its wondrous transfor- 
mations ! Palatial residences, with their beautiful parterres of flowers and evergreens, have sprung 
up, the admiration of the stranger ! Then, the Avenue led nowhere but to the swamps of Scajaquada 
Cfreek and the more desolate lands beyond, but now it leads to the beautiful city of the dead and to 
the lovely Park with its pathways, its serpentine walks, its romantic lake and miniature islands, and 
its expansive lawns dotted with umbrageous oaks of a century's growth ! Such are some of the 
physical changes which have marked the quarter-centuiy we are contemplating." 

The War of the Rebellion. 123 

The high treason was denounced on every hand. When the first shock 
of the portentous event had passed away, then the citizens of Buffalo 
showed themselves as fully imbued with patriotism and liberality as the 
people of any other city in the Union. The militia put itself in readiness 
for active duty. The people subscribed $30,000 to provide for volunteers 
and their families, to which sum the Common Council added $50,000. 
War was imminent and the people began in earnest to prepare for it. 
Nearly a hundred of the prominent elderly citizens of the city enrolled 
themselves as a company of "Union Continentals.** The old Continental 
uniform was adopted and ex-President Fillmore was chosen Captain of 
the company. 

Of the part taken in the bloody strife that followed, by the thousands 
of volunteers from the city of Buffalo and the surrounding towns of Erie 
county, the reader has been given a detailed history, as far as it is accessi- 
ble, in the preceding volume. It is sufficient to say here that the sons of 
the Queen City went forth, many of them never to return, to do their 
part in the struggle for the permanence of the government, with the same 
high degree of patriotic devotion that inspired the whole people of the 
State, and as numerously in proportion to the population of the city, as 
volunteered from any other similar community in the country. 

Just after the breaking out of the war, late in 1861 or early in 1862, 
the lamented Guy H. Salisbury wrote as follows, in comparing the city 
at that time with its condition in 1836, twenty*five years before: — 

" In 1836 we had less than 16,000 inhabitants. Now we may in round 
numbers count 100,000. We had then but a single street paved, lor one- 
fifth of a mile in length — now we have fifty-two miles of superior pave- 
ment in one hundred and thirty-seven streets or two hundred and fifty-nine 
times as much as in 1836. Then we had but one mile of imperfectly con- 
structed sewers, in three streets — now we have an extensive and con- 
nected system of sewerage, of which fifty-two miles have already been 
built in the most substantial manner, in one hundred and twenty-four 
streets, the benefits of which to the publichealth, cleanliness and comfort 
will be incalculable. We had then but the dim lamps of the oyster cellars 
to light the steps of benighted aldermen and drowsy watchmen — now we 
have one of the best gas works in the Union, whose castellated edifice is 
a model of graceful architecture, and which has laid d'>wn fifty-five miles 
of street mams, furnishing a beautiful light to over twenty-one hundred 
street lamps, elevated on a tasteful iron column, whose lone lines of flam- 
ing cressets are in brilliant contrast with the sombre gloom through 
which we used to ffrope our way. Then we obtained the indispensable 
element of water from public and private wells, often at inconvenient 
distances ; while, for the extinguishment of fires, we had to depend mainly 
upon reservoirs under the streets in only the central parts of the city, 
that were filled by a " Water-Jack" affair, drawn to and from the canal 
by a pair of horses. Now, we have the current of the Niagara river flow- 
ing in larg^e iron pipes through every section of the city, supplying 
numerous hydrants, whence our principal steam fire-engrines have always 
an exhaustless supply for arresting conflagrations ; whfle in our residen- 

124 History of Buffalo. 

ces the touch of a child's fineer can summon the gushing waters as e;isily 
as could the nymphs of Uncfine, midst their native streams. 

"Our harbor was in 1836 of such limited capacity as to present a 
seeming barrier to the increase of our commercial business. Now, by 
an enlarged and liberal system of improvement we have in all, some 
thirteen miles of water front, for lake and canal craft— enough to answer 
all the wants of our commerce for an indefinite period. This, too, is 
exclusive of Blaclc Rock harbor, and the new commercial emporium of 
Tonawanda, which, some years since, neglecting her mullet fisheries, had 
ambitious aspirings to become an infant rival of Buffalo and a colony of 
Cleveland, it has been understood that the experiment was not a 

*' In 1836 we had but a single railroad running into Buffalo — that 
from Niagara Falls — of not less than twenty miles in length, with no 
connection whatever with any other road. Now, we have the great New 
York Central, with its vast freight and passenger depots and enormous 
business — the New York and Erie, the terminus of whose line, is prac- 
tically here — ^the Buffalo and State Line, with its interminable western 
connections — the Buffalo, New York and Erie, and the Buffalo and Lake 
Huron, connecting with the Great Western and Grand Trunk railways, 
and altogether with over 2,000 miles of Canadian roads. 

" And in the convenience of local travel, within the city limits, the 
change is great indeed. In 1836 we had but four omnibusses, makine 
hourly trips through a part of Main street, and literally a one-horse rai^ 
road that made occasional trips between the terrace market and Black 
Rock ferry. Now, we have eleven miles of well built double track 
street railways, through our most important avenues, running sixty 
elegant passenger cars, not surpassed in any city, that make regular 
trips every five and ten minutes, greatly facilitating the travel and mter- 
course between the distant sections of the city, rendering a suburban 
residence a cheap, accessible and desirable home, and adaine more to 
the permanent value of the property thus benefitted, than all the cost of 
the roads and their ample equipment." 

On the 25th of January, 1865, the American Hotel was burned to 
the ground, and James H. Sidway, William H. Gillett and George H. 
Tifft, were killed by a falling wall. 

As will be seen by a perusal of a subsequent chapter, the manufactur- 
ing interests of Buffalo had not developed to a very encouraging degree 
previous to about i860. At that time earnest men of the city made a 
vigorous effort to stimulate interest in the subject, and to attract capital 
from other points for investment in manufacturing in this city. An 
" Association for the Encouragement of Manufacturing in Buffalo," was 
formed, through the efforts of which, combined with a growing convic- 
tion that this was a desirable point for the establishment of manufactur- 
ing enterprises, an impetus was given in this direction, the effects of 
which have continued down to the present time. The growth of the 
city in this respect has been of a healthy and permanent character ; few 
failures of important manufacturing establishments have ever occurred, 
and the present importance and future supremacy of Buffalo, over most 

The Fenian Invasion of Canada. 125 

other cities of its size, in respect to its manufactures, is generally acknowl- 
edged. The proper development of these interests cannot but prove a 
powerful element in the future growth and prosperity of the city.* 

In 1862, a law was passed under the provisions of which the differ- 
ent wards of the city were allowed more than one Supervisor each, as 
had previously been the case, with the exception of the Thirteenth 
Ward. The First, Second, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Wards had 
three Supervisors in the year 1862, and after that year, two each, the 
same as all the other wards, except the Thirteenth. 

The last time that warlike demonstrations were made in the city of 
Buffalo was during the first half of June, 1866, when the city was made 
an important rendezvous by the Fenian organization preparatory to its 
invasion of Canada. During that futile attempt to capture Canada, as 
a preliminary step to the subjugation of Great Britain, Buffalo was the 
headquarters of detachments of the Fenians, and a point of departure 
for Canadian soil, as well as a haven of retreat at the end of the inglori- 
ous campaign. The Fenian soldiers began to arrive in the city during 
the last days of May, and by the first of June there were probably about 
a thousand of the organization quartered here, although the entire 
movement, especially at the outset, was generally received with ridicule 
by all who were not in direct sympathy with it; yet the presence of 
so many strangers in the city, and the dissemination of numerous wild 
rumors, caused a good deal of excitement. 

Towards midnight of the 31st of May, squads of the invaders were 
marching through the streets towards Black Rock, and a train of loaded 
wagons, with munitions of war, went northward to the vicinity of the 
Pratt rolling-mill, whence they crossed to Canada, on canal boats towed by 
tugs. The Fenian force here was then under immediate command of Gen- 
eral O'Neil. The United States authorities took steps early in the move- 
ment, to prevent the transportation of men and arms across the river. 
The steamer Michigan passed down the river and took a position about 
opposite the Clinton mills, at 6 o'clock A. M., of June ist, but she was too 
late to oppose the crossing of the invaders, as above noted. It is sup- 
posed that nearly one thousand Fenians crossed the river that night 
Two armed tugs were placed in the harbor as a patrol. 

When it became known that an aggressive movement had actually 
been made, the excitement in the city greatly increased. Crowds lined 
the river bank, and an almost continuous tide of travel turned toward 
Black Rock during the first day of June. In the evening of that day, a 
Fenian meeting was held in the Opera House. On the 2d, General Grant 
arrived in the city, and placed General William F. Barry in command of 
the frontier, with authority to call out the National Guard, if necessary. 
A detachment of the regular army were ordered to Fort Porter, from 

* See saUequent chapter on " Manufactures of Buffalo." 

126 History of Buffalo. 

Sackett's Harbor, and prompt measures were adopted to prevent further 
hostile movements from this side. 

Of the brief operations of the Fenian force that crossed the river here, 
little need be said. An engagement was fought at Limestone Ridge, on 
Saturday, June 2d, resulting disastrously to the invaders. In the mean- 
time, large numbers of the organization continued to arrive in BufiFalo, 
and an attempt was made to reinforce General O'Neil during Saturday 
night following the engagement ; but the boats were met by orders from 
the Greneral to return with the reinforcements, and then proceed to Fort 
Erie, for the purpose of transporting to Buffalo the retreating Fenians. 
This was attempted ; but when the boats were midway in the river, they 
were met by the propeller Harrison and ordered to surrender ; they did 
so, and were taken under the guns of the Michigan. Something over 
five hundred men were captured, but a large number escaped before the 
final release of the main body. 

While this movement practically ended the invasion, it did not stop 
the excitement in Buffalo. Train loads of Fenians continued to arrive, 
mass-meetings were held, and boasts were freely made that the invaders 
would again plant their standard on British soil, within a few days. On 
the 4th, a detachment of artillery arrived at Fort Porter, fnwn Fort Ham- 
ikon. On the 5th, Captain Randall's force of militia captured several 
wagon loads of arms, which had arrived at the express office here. 

The prospect at this time must have been a hopeless one to the 
Fenians ; but this fact did not serve to prevent an enthusiastic mass- 
meeting in the opera house, on the evening of the 5th, at which City 
Clerk, C. S. Macomber, presided. 

On the 5th, orders were made public in the city, signed by the Attor- 
ney General of the United States, for the arrest of all persons supposed 
to be connected with the Fenians. This action exerted a very depressing 
influence upon the whole movement ; but arrivals of Fenians continued 
until the 8th. On the 7th the chief Fenian officers who had been cap- 
tured, to the number of eighteen, gave bail before Judge Clinton and 
were released ; the other prisoners were soon after set free on their own 

Orders were issued on the 12th, under which the entire Fenian force 
returned to their homes. General Barry furnishing transportation. On 
the 14th, the following bulletin was printed in the local newspapers: — 

"On behalf of that portion of the Fenian army who rendezvoused in 
this city but a few days, the undersigned beg to return their most pro- 
found gratitude to the citizens of Buffalo. Coming among you as stran- 
gers and stigmatized by those in British interests, the courtesy and aid 
you have so generously extended is, therefore, the more appreciated, and 
is characteristic of that indomitable love of liberty which is a prominent 
feature in the American people. Those who have thus shared your hos- 
pitality are now compelled to return to their homes without accomplish- 

The Park System Inaugurated. 127 

ia^ the object dearest to their hearts, and for which thejjr were ready to 
offer up their lives." [After reviewing the causes of their defeat* the bul- 
letin concludes :] " In conclusion, it affords us much pleasure that the con- 
duct of the men has been such as not to disgrace the cause and to meet 
your general approval. J. W. Fitzgerald. 

"June 14, 1866. MICHAEL SCANLAN." 

In the summer of 1868, Mr. Frederick Law Olmstead, the distinguished 
landscape architect of New York city, was called to Buffalo by a number 
of public-spirited citizens, who saw the great need of providing the 
dty with a broad and beneficent system of public parks before it 
should be too late. The subject had often been earnestly discussed for 
several years previous to this first public act in that direction. The 
gentlemen through whose agency Mr. Olmstead's services were first 
secured, were Messrs. Pascal P. Pratt, Sherman S. Jewett, Richard Flach, 
Joseph Warren and Wm. Dorsheimer. Hon. Wm. F. Rogers was then 
mayor of the city and he lent his favor and influence to the movement ; 
it was further advanced by the liberal policy of the Common Council. 
After a thorough examination of the city with reference to the possibili- 
ties of establishing parks, Mr. Olmstead made a full report of such favora- 
ble character that action was at once begun under its general recom- 
mendations. A Board of Park Commissioners was appointed and an act 
of the Legislature passed in April, 1869, authorizing the issue of bonds 
for the prosecution of the work. During the succeeding five or six 
years, under immediate supervision of Mr. Wm. McMillan, super- 
intendent, work was vigorously pushed on all parts of the park sys- 
tem, resulting finally in the magnificent free public resorts with which 
the city is now provided. The parks and their construction will be found 
fully described in a subsequent chapter. 

On the 24th of June, 1872, the comer stone of that noble structure, 
the City and County Building, was laid, with appropriate ceremonies ; 
the building has been described in the preceding volume. It was finished 
and ready for occupancy early in 1876. On the 28th of Feb- 
ruary of that year, the Common Council appointed a special com- 
mittee to make suitable arrangements for the formal occupancy of the 
new structure. This committee was composed of the president, A. S. 
Bemis, and Aldermen A. L. Lothridge, Nathan C. Simons, Elijah Am- 
brose, and Clerk, R. D. Ford. In behalf of the bar of the dty, Hon. 
George W. Clinton prepared and submitted to his professional brethren 
the following paper : — 

" It is announced that on the 13th inst., the new City and County 
Hall will be open for the reception of all our Courts of Record, it 
seems to us impossible that the gentlemen of benches and bar can bid 
farewell to the old court house without a feeling of reeret; and we 
venture to suggest the propriety of their assembling therein at two 
o'clock P. M., of Saturday next, for the purpose of a free interchange of 
memories and social intercourse. 

" Buffalo, March 7, 1876." 

128 History of Buffalo. 

These were the pFeliminary steps towards the series of meetings^ 
addresses, congratulations, resolutions, and other ceremonies by the 
municipal authorities, the bar and the clergy, attendant upon the dedica- 
tion and occupancy of the new City Hall. The Common Council met 
for the last time in the old court house, March 6, 1876. The new 
building was thrown open to the public on the 13th of March, 1876. 
The exercises by (he members of the bench and bar were very interest- 
ing, and will be more fully detailed in a subsequent chapter. At a 
meeting held in the old court house, in Clinton street, many interesting 
and able addresses were made, most of them, of a historical nature 
and all partaking of the character of a farewell to the old building 
where so many grand legal triumphs had been won. In the address 
by Hon. James Sheldon on that occasion, he thua referred to the first 
court house : — 

''At the time the court house was erected (18 17) it was the finest 
and most imposing edifice in the village. Situated upon the highest 
point of land m the corporation limits, it was visible from every direction 
and from the cupola or tower, an extensive view was presented of the 
villa[ge and of Lake Erie and the surrounding country. It must be re- 
remembered that for many years the adjacent buildings were, with but few 
exceptions, only two stones in height, so that they offered no obstruction 
to tne view of the splendid scenery which was spread before the 
observer. Indeed it was the custom of our hospitable people to escort 
all visitors to the tower, in order to point out for their admiration the 
broad expanse of Lake Erie, whitened by the sails of commerce, the beau- 
tiful river of Niagara and the shores of Canada, where the historic ruins of 
Fort Erie were already growing gray with the decay of years. The 
court house bell, which some of us have heard from mfancy, not only 
rang to indicate the hours for the assembling of courts or religious or 
other public meeting's, but pealed forth many an alarm when conflagra- 
tions tnreatened and the villagers all hastened, carrying their leathern 
buckets from their houses, to aid in preventing the destruction of the 
homes and property of their neighbors. 

The old court house to which Judge Sheldon referred, was torn 
down in 1875. All the business of the city government, as well as 
that of the county, is now transacted in the magnificent new City and 
County Hall, which is located on the square between Franklin, Dela- 
ware, Church and Eagle streets. The total cost of this structure, includ- 
ing its. furnishing and the improvement of the grounds, was $1,450,000. 

On the 20th day of May, 1880, an act was passed by the Legislature, 
creating a Municipal Court in Buffalo. Its purpose was to displace all 
the Justices' Courts then existing in the city. The law gives the Muni- 
cipal Court jurisdiction over all cases in the city where $300 or less, in 
money, are involved; in matters of accounts where the total sum of 
the accounts of both parties does not exceed $600 ; cases of damage to 
person or property to the amount of $300 ; on confession of judgment, 
where the amount confessed does not exceed $500 ; and in some other 


Improvements in the System of Sewerage. 129 

classes of cases. There are two judges of this court, who were appointed 
by the mayor, and confirmed by the Common Council ; the term of one 
of them is six and one-half years, from July i, 1880, and of the other 
five and one-half years. At the expiration of the terms of the present 
judges, the offices will be filled by election. The act provides that the 
Justices of the Peace holding office at the time of the erection of the 
new court, should finish their terms. The first Judges of the Municipal 
Court arc George S. Wardwell and George A. Lewis. Otto Volger is 
Clerk of the Court. 

The surface of the land on which the city of Buffalo stands, is of such 
a character as to afford excellent natural advantages for drainage ; but 
the construction of that portion of the Erie Canal, known as the Main 
and Hamburg street canal, intercepted the natural line of drainage in the 
section of the city through which it passes ; as a consequence the sewage 
of that portion ot the city has for many years been drained into the 
canal, creating a dangerous and offensive nuisance that has become more 
and more a source of trouble and anxiety, as the city has become more 
thickly settled. This fact has led to repeated efforts on the part of the 
city government, to devise some means for the abatement of the evil. 
Unavailing appeals to the State for assistance in the matter have been 
made, and different plans, such as the extension of the canal up to the 
Buffalo Creek, near the stone bridge of the Lake Shore Railroad, dam- 
ming the creek at the sulphur springs, and taking the water through the 
old hydraulic canal and thence into the Hamburg; placing a water- 
wheel in the Ohio basin slip, to create a current in the offensive waters 
of the canal, with many others of less importance, have been tried or 
discussed, but none of them promised accomplishment of the desired 
object. Prolonged agitation and discussion of the subject through 
several years past, finally resulted in a conclusion on the part of the city 
authorities, that permanent relief could be expected only from an inter- 
cepting sewer, which should cut off the sewage from the canal, and 
extending far enough northward along the Niagara river, to empty its 
flow into that stream. 

In the discussion that arose as to the best method of securing 
competent supervision of this great work. Mayor Grover Cleveland 
strenuously advocated the appointment of a commission which should 
have full charge of the undertaking until finished ; in this he was 
opposed by the Common Council and some other city officials. In 
a communication submitted to the Council on February 20, 1882, the 
Mayor said : — 

" The construction of this sewer is, I believe, the most extensive 
work, and will probably involve more expenditure and more care and 
attention, than any other ever before attempted in this city. It should 
meet all the necessities of the future and anticipate the needs of the 
increased growth and progress which awaits us. There should be no 

I30 History of Buffalo. 

mistake made in locating the sewer ; and the manner of its construction 
should be superintended and constantly watched by the best engineering 
skill and care. The advantage of havmg the work commenced and com- 
pleted under the same management, must be obvious. Your honorable 
oody has quite enough to occupy your time in the ordinary matters of 
municipal affairs, which from weclc to week are urged upon your con- 
sideration ; and our city engineer and his corps of assistants should be 
constantly employed in the city's current affairs, which necessarily fall to 
his department. Under these circumstances I beg leave to suggest that 
the construction of the contemplated sewer be put in the hands of a com- 
mission of our citizens, who shall have full charge of the work." 

The commission advised by the Mayor was finally agreed upon, when 
he nominated Messrs. Daniel C. Beard, Jacob Scheu, George Gorham, 
Michael Nellany and George B. Mathews, who were subsequently 
confiimed. Before deciding upon the route of the proposed sewer, the 
services of the distinguished sanitary engineer, George E. Waring, Jr., 
were secured, who acted in conjunction with the commission in select- 
ing the route, which was made as follows : — 

" Beginning at the mill-race sewer in Swan street, following the line of 
Swan street to the terrace, through the Terrace to Court street, through 
Court street to Fourth street, as far as Porter Avenue, thence along the 
slope of the ifront to the bank of the canal, and along the bank of the canal 
to a point near Albany street and to the south thereof , and thence under 
the Erie canal and Black Rock harbor out into the Niagara river/' 

City bonds for $150,000 were issued dated November i, 1882, for the 
construction of this work. The estimated cost of the sewer is $764,370. 
Work was begun about April i, 1883. 

supervisors of buffalo. 

Following is a complete list of the Supervisors of the different wards 
of the city of Buffalo since its enlargement in 1854 to the present time: — 

First J>^<rr</— 1854, Patrick Milton; 1855- 58, Thomas Edmonds; 1859, 
Michael Collins; i86o-'6i, John O'Donnell; 1862, Thomas Edmonds, 

iohn O'Donnell, James Fleeharty; 1863, James Fleeharty, Thomas M. 
[night; 1864, T. M. Knight, Dennis McNamara; 1865, James Fleeharty, 
Joseph Murphy; 1866, Austin Hanrahan, George Campbell; 1867, A. 
Hanrahan, Maurice Courtney ; 1868, A. Hanrahan, Malhias Ryan ; 1869, 
A. Hanrahan, John Pier; 1870, J. Pier, Edward Mullihan ; 1871, J. Pier, 

iohn Manning; 1872, Alex Love, G. G. Smith ; 1873, G. G. Smith, James 
lanrahan; 1874, James McCarthy, Thomas Quinn; 1875-76, John 
Norris, James Manahar ; 1877, Jeremiah Higgins, James Manahar ; 1878, 
Jeremiah Higgins, Hu&^h Hogan ; 1879, Hu^h Hogan, John Hynes; 1880, 
Hugh Hogan, John Hynes; 1881, Hugh Hogan, James Reardon; 1882, 
James Reardon, J. McCarthy ; 1883, Joseph McCarthy, Dennis Corbett. 
Second Ward-^iSSAf Charles E. Young ; 1855, Nelson K. Hopkins; 
1856, Orlando Allen; 1857, '58, '59 and '60, William C. White; i86i,J.K. 
Tvler ; 1862, John M. Scott, Amos Morgan, James S. Lyon ; 1863, William 
M. Scott, James S. Lyon; 1864, J. S. Lyon, Hugh Webster; 1865, Hugh 
Webster, Walter G. Seeley ; 1866, Hugh Webster, W. G. Seeley ; 1867, 
Hugh Webster, Z. Bonney ; 1868, Z. Bonney, P. J. Ferris; 1869, H. 

Supervisors of Buffalo. 131 

Webster Z. Bonney; i870-'7i, H. Webster, Albert Haieht; 1872. A. 
Haight. Daniel Post; 1873-75, E. R. Saxton, A. L. Lotnridgfe; 1876, 

E. K. Saxton, J. M. Comstock; 1877, John Comstock, Frederick Ken- 
dall ; 1878, Frederick Kendall, Phillip Hoenig; 1879, Phillip Hoenie, 
John Roberts ; 1880, John Roberts, Charles A. Butman ; 1881, Charles A. 
Butman, Frederick Kendall; 1882, Frederick Kendall, Charles A. But- 
man; 1883, Frederick Kendall, Charles A. Butman. 

Third ^^tfr^^— 1*54, N. H. Gardner ; 1855- 56, Zadoc G.Allen; 1857, 
John M. Daiiid ; 1858, William M. Scott ; 1859, Z. G. Allen ; i860, Whitney 
A. Case; 1861, Joshua Barnes; 1862, James P. Bennett, John Steam; 1863, 
George Bymus, John Zier; 1864-65, John Zier, Matthew O'Brien; 
1866, George Gehring, J. fiaumgarten; 1867, Milton Wilder, Bernard 
Knor; 1868, Milton Wilder, N. Seibert; 1869, J. A. Sevmour, W. A. 
Carney; 1870, John Mahoney, J. V. Hayes; 1871, J. V. Hayes, Anselm 
Haefner; 1872, J. V. Hayes, G. M. Ruhlman; 1873. Frederick Arend, 
G. H. Kennedy; 1874, J. G. Streich, William Dolan ; 1875, W. W. 
Buffum, J. G. Streich ; 1876, W. W. BuflFum, E. W. Evans; 1877, E. W. 
Evans, Louis F. Heimlich; 1878, Louis F. Heimlich, Patrick Corriston; 
1879, Patrick Corriston, William Dolan; 1880, William Dolan, W. H. 
Carney ; 1881, W. H. Carney, J. W. Leech ; 1882, J. W. Leech, Nicholas 
Merzig; 1883, J. W. Leech, Nicholas Merzig. 

Fourth ^Fflr^^— 1854-55, O. Vaughn; 1856, S. Bettinger; 1857, Harry 
Slade; 1858, Nicholas Ottenot; 1859, George P Stevenson; i860, Rich- 

ard Flach; 1861, ; 1862, B. W. Skidmore, Philip G. Lorenz, 

Frank Fischer ; 1863, Frank Fischer, Joseph W.Smith; 1864, Harmon 
H. Griffin, Jacob Gittere : 1865, M. Leo Ritt, Levi Curtiss ; 1866, Thomas 
Famham, George M. Kolb; 1867, P. J. Ripont, L. P. Mauer ; 1868, A. C. 
Hudson, F. J. Stephan; 1869, W. S. Ovens, F. C. Fischer; 1870, G. C. 
Grimard, Ludwig Wilhelm; 1871, Ludwig Wilhelm, F. J. Stephan; 
1872, W, W. Lawson, Louis Hesman; 1873, W.W. Lawson, Charles Per- 
son; 1874- 75> E. Bertrand, Jr., C. Wagner; 1876, E. Bertrand, C. 

F. Mensch; 1877, Charles Mensch, Ernst Bamberg; 1878, Ernst Bam- 
berg, Daniel H. Pierson; 1879, Daniel H. Pier son, Ernst Bamberg; 1880, 
Louis Herman, Daniel H. Person; 1881, Daniel H. Person, George J. 
Reister ; 1882, George J. Reister, Benjamin Killinger ; 1883, O. J. Glenn, 
Julius J. Herbold. 

Fifth lVard—iSS4, A. Webster; 1855-56, Sebastian Diebold ; 1857, 
-58, George Zillig; i859-'6o, Andrew Gross; 1861, Orrin Lockwood, 
1862, Jamci» S. Irwin, Henry Nauert, George Baldus; 1863, James S. 
Irwin, George Baldus; 1864-65, James S. Irwin, George Baldus; 1865, 
J. S. Irwin, George Raldus; 1867, Henry Fort, John Huels; 1868; C. 

G. Irish, Charles Sauer; 1869, William Seymour, William Critchley; 
i870-'7'> William Seymour, Caspar J. Drescher; 1872, William rfem- 
rich, Conrad Sieber; 1873, C. Sieber, P. F. Lawson; i874-'75» William 
Seymour, Louis Fritz; 1876, L. Fritz, P. F. Lawson; 1877, Lyman A. 
Daniels, Fred H. Tuhl ; 1878, Lyman A. Daniels, Louis Fntz; 1870, 
Louis Fritz, Phillip Steingoeter; 1880, Phillip Steingoeter, Ed. A. 
Forsyth ; 1881, Ed. A. Forsyth, Phillip Steingoeter; 1882, Phillip Stein- 
goeter, Charles Kibler ; 1883, Phillip Steingoeter, Charles Kibler. 

Sixth fFiirrf— 1854, John Schwartz; 1855, Peter Rechtenwalt; 1856, 
'5 7-'58-'6o, John Davis ; 1859, John Stengel; 1861, Joseph Davis; 1862, 
Jacob H. Pfohle,' John Haller, Felix Bieger; 1863, Jacob H. Pfohle, 
Felix Bieger; 1864-65, J. Stengel, Jacob Himmens; i866-'68, J. Stengel, 


132 History of Buffalo. 

i. Himmens; 1867, J. Stengel:, J. P. Walter; 1869-70, Leopold Mullen* 
off, Caspar Meyer; 1871, Adam Wick, A. Lenhart; 1872-73, William 
Scheier, Ernst BiUeb; 1874-75, Sebastian Elser, Henry Miller; 1876, S. 
Elser, Michael Loebie; 1877, Michael Loebig, Sebastian Elser; 1878, Se- 
bastian Elser, Peter ICoerbel; 1879, Peter Koerbel, Adam Wick; 1880, 
Adam Wick, William Sdhier; 1881, William Schier, Adam Wiclc; 1882, 
Adam Wick A. J. Mayer; 1883, Louis Lorenz, Alphonzo L Mayer. 

Seventh Ward— i6s4-\6, Samuel Hecox; i855-*6, Anthony Kraft: 
i857-'58, Volney Randall; 1859, Anthony Kraft; i86o-'6i, George 
Reichert; 1862, George Reichert, Adam Weller, Henry Bitz; 1803, 
Henry Bitz, George rfeiffer; 1864, Henry Benz, George J. Buchheit; 
1865, John Gisel, Xouis Fritz; 1866, John Gisel, .Louis Fritz; 1867, 
J. Gisel, Jacob Ban^asser; 1868, J. Bangasser, Henry Hitchler; 

1869, Conrad Baer, Henry Schcrmer; i870-'7i» C. oaer, Conrad 
Branner; 1872, Alfred Lyth, Henry Schermer; 1 873-74* A. Lyth, 
G. Baer; 1875, G. Baer, M. L. Luke; 1876, G. Baer, Peter Bran- 
ner; 1877, Peter Branner John H. Ludwig; 1878, John H. Ludwig, 
Jacob Beier, Jr. ; 1879, Jacob Beier, Jr., Frank E. Winter; 1880, Frank 
E. Winter, Peter Wohlers; 1881, Peter Wohlers, Henry Moest; 1882, 
Henry Moest, F. A. Menge ; 1883, Henry Moest. F. A. Menge. 

iEiW/M ITarrf— 1854, David Page ; 1855- 56, Thomas O'Dwyer; 1857, 

iames Duffy; 1858, John P. O'Brien; 1859, William Ashman; i860, John 
L Hotter; 1861, James Ryan; 1862, Thomas H. Myers Dennis M. 
Enright; 1863, James McCool, Michael Carroll ; 1864, 'Price A. Matte- 
son, John Hopkins; 1865, Geor&re Diebold, Cyrus Harmon; 1866, 
Michael Carroll, Samuel M. Baker; 1867, George Weber, Michael 
Keenan ; 1868, Michael Keenan, George Gates : 186^, William Fitzgerald, 
Henry McQuade; 1870, S. McQuade, Daniel Cruice; 1871. B. R. Cole, 
Robert Wlieelan ; 18^2, Fred Rigger, Thomas Canfield; 1873, John 
Manning, Henry Bnnkman; 1874, Edward Lyon, J. K. Wolf; 1875, 
Timothy Sweeney, John Ffeil ; 1876, Timothy Lyons, James E. Nunan; 
1877, Timothy Lyons, James Rogers 1878, James Rogers, Patrick Con- 
ners; 1879, Patrick Conners, John Davey ; 1880, John Davey, Charles 
A. Flanagan ; 1881, Charles A. Flanagan, John Hurley ; 1882, John Hurley 
Michael Gorman ; 1883, Michael Gorman, Michael Kelley. 

Nvit/i WTrrrf— 1854,-56, George L. Marvin; 1857, Nelson Randall ; 
1858, Fayette Rumsey; 1859, George L. Marvin: 1861, Albert Sawin; 
1862, George P. Baker, William Ring ; 1863, William Ring, W. B. Peck ; 
1864, William Ring, W. B. Peck; 1865. C. A. VanSlyke, A. J. Buck- 
land; 1866, George Colt, Elias Green ; 1867, A. J. Buckland, D. G. Jack- 
son; 1868, A. J. Buckland, T. W. Toye; 1869, T. W. Toye, E. Green; 

1870, E. Green, D. W. Burt; 1871, E. Green, Silas Kingsley ; 1872, D. W. 
Burt, T. W. Toye; 1873, T. W. Toye, E. Green; i874'-75, E. D. 
Berry, W. R. Crumb ; 1876, E. D. Berry, Fred Busch ; 1877, Fred Busch, 
Daniel Mann ; 1878, Daniel Mann, John C. Ingram ; 1879, John C. Ingram, 
Daniel Mann; 1880, Daniel Mann, Robert K. Smither ; 1881, Robert K. 
Smither, JohnMesmer; 1882, John Mesmer, Robert K. Smither; 1883, 
Robert K. Smither, William Thurstone. 

7>«/A Ward 1854-57, Wells^Brooks ; 1858, O. G. Steele; 1859, 
.. ^ , ^' '' ' . - ^ ... . " ph 

Supervisors of Buffalo. 133 

- 70, C. E. Young, Philip Miller ; i»7i, C. E. Young, S. M. Robinson; 
1872, C. E. Young, Philip Miller; 1873, J. A. Gittcre, L. P. Beyer; 
1874, L. P. Beyer, Charles E. Young; 1875,-76, L. P. Beyer, Amos B. 
Tanner ; 1877, Amos B. Tanner, Charles E. Young^; 1878, Charles E. 
Young, Amos B. Tanner; 1879, Amos B. Tanner, Charles E. Young; 
1880, Charles E. Young, James S. Murphy; 1881, James S. Murphy; 
Charles E. Young; 1882, Charles E. Young, Frank W. Hess; 1883, F. 
W. Hess, Philo D. Beard. 

Eleventh fT/irrf— 1854- 55, Harry Thompson ; i856-'57, James Patter- 
son; 1 858-'59, Harry Thompson; i860, Thomas Stocking; 1861, Thomas 
R. Stocking; 1862, Thomas R. Stocking, Alfred H. Giddings; 1863, 
Thomas R. Stocking, William Richardson ; 1 864^*65, T. R. Stocking 
William Richardson; 1866, William Richardson, P. A. Balcom; 1867, 
P. A. Balcom, James Sheldon ; 1 868^*69, P. A. Balcom, Dickinson Gaz- 
lay; 1870, P. A. Balcoiii, H. O. Cowing; 1871, A. McLeish, Leonard 
Hinkley; 1872, A. McLeish, Thomas Thompson ; 1873- 74- 75» Thomas 
Prowett, Christopher Smith; 1876, Thomas Prowett, Dickinson Gw- 
lav ; 1877, Dickinson Gazlay, Levi E. Short ; 1878, Levi E. Short, George 
SnerifF ; 1879, George Sheriff, Charles Suor ; 1880, Charles Suor, Robert 
C. Leighton ; 1881, Robert C. Leighton, O. A. Jenkins; 1882, O. A. 
Jenkins, Thomas Prowett ; 1883, O. A. Jenkins, Christopher Smith. 

Twelfth Ward— iSS4, Samuel Ely ; 1855, Harmon H. Griffin ; 1856- 
'57» G- w. Hall; 1858, Charles Manly; 1850, Job Gorton; i860, Elisha 
Safford; 1861, Jacob Reichert; 1862, Christopher Laible, John A. 
Smith; 1863, Christopher Laible, Henry Mochel; 1864, Christopher 
Laible, Henry Mochel; 1865, William rost, Robert Ambrose; i8(36, 
Robert Ambrose, J. A. Chase; 1867, G. J. Woelfley, Samuel Eley; 
1868, G. J. Woelfley, Henry Mochel ; 1869, E. R. Jewett, F. Haehn ; 
1870, Frank Fomess, Jacob Smith; 1871, Jacob Smith, J. Cantillon; 
1872, J. Cantillon, Washington Russell ; 1873, James Delaney, John Abel ; 
1874, James Delaney, Washington Russell; 1875, Leonard Eley, 
J. S. Estel; 1876, Leonard Eley, Peter Glor; 1877, Peter Glor, Jr., 
Leonard Eley; 1878, Peter Glor, Jr., Leonard Eley; 1879, Peter 
Glor, Jr., James Delaney ; 1880, James Delaney, John Mang; 1881, John 
Mang, Michael Cronin; 1882, Michael Cronin, John Mang ; 1883, Jacob 
Streicher, John Mang. 

Thirteenth Ward—\%1^ Horace A, Buffum; i855,'56. Job Taylor; 
1857, George Moore; 1858, John Kelly ; 1859, William B. Hart; i860, 
Aaron Martin; 1861, Aaron Martin; 1862, Daniel M. Joslyn ; 1863, 
George Orr ; 1864-65, George Orr ; 1866, T. M. Gibbon ; 1807, George 
Orr; 1868, Frank Puetz; i86q-'70, William Graham; 1871, William 
Shannon ; 1872- 73, J. J, Coates; 1874,-75,-76, Edward Corriston; 1877, 
Edward Corriston; 1878, John McCarthy; 1879,-82, Emile G. Sirret ; 
1883, William J. Fisher, 


In the following few pages is given the Civil list of the city, from 
the date of the first village organization, to the present time, including 
the officials of the village and city, above the office of collector : — 

1816 — Trustees, Oliver Forward, Charles Townsend, Heman B. Pot- 
ter, Ebenezer Walden, Jonas Harrison, Samuel Wilkeson ; Clerk, Jona- 
than E. Chaplin; Treasurer, Josiah Trowbridge; Collector, Moses 

134 History of Buffalo. 

1817. — Trustees, Ebenezer Walden, Jonas Harrison, John G. Camp, 
Samuel Wilkeson, Elias Ransom ; Clerk, Jonathan E. Chaplin ; Treas- 
urer, Josiah Trowbridge ; Collector, Moses Baker. 

18 18. — Trustees, Joseph Stocking, Charles Townsend, Heman B. Pot- 
ter, Oliver Forward, Abraham Larzelere ; Clerk, Stephen K. Grosvenor ; 
Treasurer, Elijah D. Efner ; Collector, Moses Baker. 

1819. — Trustees, Charles Townsend, Samuel Wilkeson, Joseph Stock- 
ing, Heman B. Potter, Joseph Landon ; Clerk, Stephen K- Grosvenor ; 
Treasurer, Elijah D. Efner ; Collector, Leonard P. Crary. 

1820. — Trustees, Charles Townsend, Cyrenius Chapm, Samuel Wilke- 
son, Joseph Stocking, William T. Miller ; Clerk, Stephen K. Grosvenor ; 
Treasurer, Elijah D. Efner ; Collector, Moses Baker. 

1 82 1. — Trustees, Charles Townsend, Samuel Wilkeson, Joseph Stock- 
ing, Cyrenius Chapin, Heman B. Potter ; Clerk, Stephen K. Grosvenor ; 
Treasurer, Elijah D. Efner; Collector, E. F. Gilbert. 

1822.— Trustees, Ebenezer Johnson, Oliver Forward, John B. Hicks, 

iohn Scott, Henry M. Campbell ; Clerk, Gorham Chapin ; Treasurer, 
lenry R. Seymour; Attorney, Heman B. Potter; Collector, Moses 

1823. — ^Trustees, Oliver Forward, Charles Townsend, David Burt, 
Abner Bryant, Benjamin Caryl; Clerk, Joseph Clary ; Treasurer, Henry 
R. Seymour ; Collector, James Higgins. 

1824. — ^Trustees, Heman B. Potter, David Burt, Joseph Stocking, 
Nathaniel Vosburgh, Oliver Forward ; Clerk, Joseph Clary ; Treasurer, 
Henry R. Seymour ; Collector, Lorin Pierce. 

i825.-^Truste^s, Oliver Forward, David Burt, Heman B. Potter, 
Ebenezer Johnson, Nathaniel Vosburc^h ; Clerk, Joseph Clary ; Treas- 
urer, Henry R. Seymour ; Collector, James Hignnns. 

1826. — Trustees, Oliver Forward, Benjamin Rathbun, William Hollis- 
ter, Joseph D. Hoyt, Major A. Andrews; Clerk, Henry E. Davies; 
Treasurer, Henry K. Seymour ; Collector, James Higgins. 

1827. — Trustees, Benjamin Rathbun, Joseph D. Hoyt, William HoUis- 
ter, Oliver Forward, Major A. Andrews; Clerk, Henry E. Davies; 
Treasurer, Henry R. Seymour ; Collector, Leonard P. Crary. 

1828. — Trustees, Bela D.Coe, Anthony Beers, Joseph Clary, Hiram 
Pratt, Moses Baker ; Clerk, George P. Barker ; Treasurer, Henry R. 
Seymour; Collector, James Higgins. 

1 829,^Trustees, Joseph Clary, Hiram Pratt, Bela D. Coe, Moses Baker 
Anthony Beers ; Clerk, George P. Barker; Treasurer, Henry R. Sey- 
mour ; Collector, David E. Merrill. 

1830. — Trustees, Moses Baker, Theodore Cobum, John W. Clark, 
Joseph Clary, William Ketchum ; Clerk, George P. Barker ; Treasurer, 
Henry R. Seymour ; Collector, David E. Mernll. 

183 1. —Trustees, Bela D. Coe, Moses Baker, John W. Clark, James 
Sheldon, Theodore Cobum ; Clerk, Elijah Ford; Treasurer, Henry R. 
Seymour; Collector, David E. Merrill. 

1%12.— Village Officers, Trustees, John W. Clark, William S. Waters, 
Cyrus Athearn John D. Hearty, James Sheldon ; Clerk, Elijah Ford ; 
Treasurer, Henry R. Seymour ; Collector, Oilman Smith. 

Thtee officials held only until the organization under the city charter 
in May. 

City Officials, 135 

City Officers. — Buffalo was incorporated as a city by act of the Legis- 
lature in 1832. The first election under the new charter was on the 28th 
of May following. Mayor, Ebenezer Johnson ; Clerk, Dyre Tillinghast; 
Treasurer, Henry R. Seymoui* ; Attorney, George P. Barker ; Surveyor, 
J. J. Baldwin; Street Commissioner, Edward Baldwin; Aldermen — First 
Ward, Isaac S. Smith, Joseph W. Brown ; Second Ward, John G. Camp, 
Henry Root ; Third Ward, David M. Day, Ira A. Blossom ; Fourth 
Ward, Henry White, Major A, Andrews ; Fifth Ward, Ebenezer Walden, 
Thomas C. Love. 

1833. — Mayor, Major A. Andrews. Aldermen — First Ward, Stephen 
Clark, Joseph W. Brown ; Second Ward, John G. Camp, James Durick ; 
Third Ward, George B. Webster, Darius Efiirton ; Fourth Ward, Phil- 
ander Bennett, Moses Baker; Fifth Ward, Sheldon Smith, Sylvester 
Matthews. City Officers — ^Clerk, E. J. Roberts; Attorney, William A. 
Moseley ; Street Commissioner, Edward Baldwin ; Surveyor, James J. 
Baldwin ; Printer, David M. Day ; Clerk of Market, Oliver Forward ; 
Constables, William Jones, Dan Bristol, Nelson Adams, 

1834. — Mayor, Ebenezer Johnson ; Alderme?i — First Ward, Isaac S. 
Smith, Stephen Clark; Second Ward, Squire S. Case, Henry Root; 
Third Ward, Birdsy Wilcox, John T. Hudson ; Fourth Ward, Moses 
Baker, Elijah Ford ; Fifth Ward, Sylvester Mathews, James Miller. 
City Officers — Clerk, E. J. Roberts ; Surveyor, J. J. Baldwin ; Treasurer, 
Orlando Allen ; Health Physician, Henry K. Stagg ; Attorney, William 
A. Moseley; Street Commissioner, Edward Baldwin ; Collector, William 
Jones ; Constables, Nelson Adams, Barney Adamy, Dan Bristol, Samuel 
Fursman, Charles M. Hoople. 

1835. — Mayor, Hiram Pratt, (Whig^ Aldermen — First Ward, John 
Prince, John W. Clark ; Second Ward, Squire S. Case, Orlando Allen ; 
Third Ward, Ira A. Blossom, William F. P. Taylor; Fourth Ward, 
Elijah Ford, Noyes Darrow ; Fifth Ward, Manly Colton, Nathaniel Vos- 
burgh. City Officers — Clerk, Theodotus Burwell ; Treasurer, Henry Root ; 
Attorney, Nathan K. Hall; Street Commissioner, Sylvester Mathews; 
Surveyor, William B. Gilbert ; Clerk of Market, Frederick B. Merrill ; 
Chief Engineer Fire Department, Samuel Jordan ; Police Constables, 
John W. Stewart, John Drew ; City Collector, William S. Rees ; Harbor 
Master, William T. Pease ; Health Physician, Alden'S. Spraeue. 

1836. — Mayor, Samuel Wilkeson, (Whie.) Aldermen — First Ward, 
Aaron Goodrich, John W. Prince; Second Ward, James Durick, Mor- 

fan L. Faulkner ; Third Ward, Stephen K. Grosvenor, Silas Sawin ; 
ourth Ward, Nathaniel Wilgus, Harlow French ; Fifth Ward, Daniel 
F. Kimball, Jeremiah Staats. City Officers — Clerk, Elbridge G. Spauld- 
ing^ ; Treasurer, A J. Douglass ; Attorney, John L. Talcott ; Street Com- 
missioner, Alanson Webster ; Surveyor, William B. Gilbert ; Clerk of 
Market, William Sparks; Chief Engineer Fire Department, Samuel Jor- 
dan ; Health Physician, Charles Winne ; Police Constables, John W. 
Stewart, Lewis Tillotson, Joseph Shepard, Elijah Kellog^g, Aaron L. 
Porter ; Collector, William Seaman : Printers, Day, otagg & Cad- 

1837. — Mayor, Josiah Trowbridge, (Whig) ; resigned December 22, 
1837 ; Pierre A, Barker elected to fill vacancy. Aldermen — First Ward, 
William Valleau, William J. Mack ; Second Ward, Jacob A. Barker, 
George E. Hayes; Third Ward, Walter Joy, Edward L. Stevenson; 
Fourth Ward, Nathaniel Wilgus, Moses Baker ; Fifth Ward, Nathan K. 

136 History of Buffalo. 

Hall, Pierre A. Barker. City (7^/ri^-Clerk, Theodore C. Peters ; Treas- 
urer, Hamlet D. Scianton ; Attorney, Theodore C. Peters ; Street Com- 
missioiier and Sanreyor, William K. Scott; Chief Ennneer Fire Depart- 
ment, Jacob A. Barker; Qeiics of Markets^Jerry Raacliff, Bartholomew 
Armstrong ; Collectors, William S. Rees, William Wells ; Police Justice, 
James L. Barton ; Health Phvsician, Charles H. Raymond ; Board of 
Health, Daniel F. Kimball, William Evans, Charles Winne; Constables, 
Robert H. Best, John M. Crosier, Philip Wilbur, Elijah Kellogg, George 
B. Gates. 

1838.— Mayor, Ebenezer Walden, (Whig.) Aldermtm— First Ward, 
Daniel F. Kimball, Charles S. Pierce; Second Ward, Squire S. Case, 
Lucius Storrs ; Third Warcl, William F. P. Taylor, James McKav ; 
Fourth Ward, Nathaniel Wilgus, Moses Baker; Fifth Ward, Charles 
Winne, Alonzo Raynor. Citf OJfkcrs— Clerk, Theodore C. Peters; 
Treasurer, Hamlet D. Scranton ; Attorney, Theodotus Burwell ; Street 
Commissioner and Surveyor, William iC, Scott; Clerks of Markets, 
Charles Norton, Darius O. Baker; Collectors, William S. Rees, Darius 
O. Baker; City Engineer Fire Department, Jacob A. Barker; Health 
Physician, Francis ll Harris ; Board of Health, Willisun Evans, George 
Coit, Moses Bristol ; Harbor Master, Samuel Chase ; Constables, George 
B. Grates, Eddy Howard, George W. Smith, Jonathan W. George, Milan 
Adams; Police Justice, James L. Barton; Superintendent of Schools, 
Oliver G. Steele. 

183a— Mayor, Hiram Pratt, (Whig.) Aldtrnun— First Ward, For. 
dyce W. Atkins, Henry Lamb; Second Ward, Lucius Storrs, Thomas 
R. Stocking; Third Ward, William HoUistcr, Jr., Edward L. Steven- 
son ; Fourth Ward, Morgan L. Faulkner, Frederick Dellenbaugh ; Fifth 
Ward, Peter Curtiss, Augustine Kimball. City OJlctrs—Gerk, Theo- 
dore C. Peters ; Treasurer, William Moore ; Attorney, Harlow S. Love ; 
Street Commissioner and Surveyor, William K. Scott ; Clerk of Markets, 
Charles Norton; Collectors, William Wells, Edwin Hurlburt; Health 
Physician, Charles Winne ; Superintendent of Schools, Oliver G. Steele; 
Police Justice, James L. Barton ; Constables, George W. Smith, George 
B. Gates, M. W. Bottom, Milan Adams, Henry Jeudevine, Robert H. 
Best, Philip Wilbur, John Pierce, Grove A. Hudson, Jonathan W. 

1840.— Mayor, Sheldon Thompson, (Whig.) ^/*ri«^«— First Ward, 
Henry Lamb, Charles A. Comstock ; Second Ward, Aaron Rumsey, 
Noah H. Gardner ; Third Ward, George B. Gleason, William Williams; 
Fourth Ward, Frederick Dellenbaugh, Philander Bennett; Fifth Ward, 
Isaac R. Harrington, Peter Curtiss. CiV> Ojfficers— Clerk, Squire S. Case ; 
Treasurer, John R. Lee ; Attorney, Harlow S. Love ; Street Commis- 
sioner and Surveyor, William K. Scott; Clerk of Markets, John Bush; 
Collectors, William Wells, Edwin Hurlburt; Superintendent of Schools, 
Daniel Bowen ; Health Physician, Charles H. Raymond. 

This year, for the first time, the Mayor was elected by the people* 
George P. Barker was the opposing candidate on the part of the Demo* 
crats. The term still remained one year. 

1 841. —Mayor, Isaac R. Harrington, (Whig) ; Ira A. Blossom oddos- 

sS?s Elbrid^e G^^ ^^^^J?u g?'^«<^rj Third Ward, Richard 

^cars, blbndge G. Spaulding; Fourth Ward, Philander Bennett, Oliver 

City OmcvoA 137 

G- Steele ; Fifth Ward, John R. Lee, Henry Roop. City OJ^ers—Cltrk, 
John T. Lacy; Treasurer, William Williams; Attorney, George W,. 
Houghton ; Street Commissioner and Surveyor, Henry Lovejoy ; Super- 
intendent of Schools, Silas Kinjgsley ; Health Physician, Austin Flint 

1842. — Mayor, George WTChnton, (Dem.); Isaac R. Harrington, 
opposing candfdate. Alaennen — First Ward, Ephraim S. Havens, Eras- 
mus D. Kobinson ; Second Ward, Noah H. Gardner, Lucius H. Pratt ; 
Third Ward, Orsamus H. Marshall, John Wilkeson; Fourth Ward, Oli- 
ver G. Steele, Nelson Randall; Fifth Ward, Asahel Camp, H. W. Pierce. 
City Ojficers— 'Clerk, John T. Lacy ; Treasurer, John R. Lee ; Attorney, 
Samuel Wilkeson, Jr. ; Street Commissioner and Surveyor, H. Lovejoy ; 
Superintendent of Schools, Samuel Caldwell ; Health Physician, Austm 

1843.— Mayor, Joseph G. Masten fDcm.); Walter Joy, opposing can- 
didate. Aldermen — First Ward, John Cummines, Patrick Smith ; Second 
Ward, Samuel F. Pratt, Francis Ellas ; Third Ward, Daniel Bowen, Hiram 
Barton ; Fourth Ward, James Delonjg, Thonipson Hersee ; Fifth Ward, 
Lewis L. Hodges, Samuel G. Walker. City £?^/rj— Clerk, John T. 
Lacy; Attorney, Asher P. Nichols; Treasurer, George C. White; 
Superintendent oi Schools, Samuel Caldwell; Collectors, William J. 
Mack, Stephen Albro, George Walker. 

1844. — Mayor, William Retchum; Oliver G. Steele opposing candi- 
date. Aldernun—Yxx^t Ward, John Cummings, Patrick Smith ; Second 
Ward, Francis S. Ellas, Samuel F, Pratt ; Third Ward, Daniel Bowen, 
Hiram Barton ; Fourth Ward, James Delong, Thoinpson Hersee ; Fifth 
Ward, Lewis L. Hodges, Samuel G. Walker. City Officers-^QXerV^ John 
T. Lacy ; Treasurer, Robert Pomeroy ; Attorney, Seth E. Sill ; Surveyor, 
Henry Lovejoy ; Street Commissioner, Isaac Hathaway ; Superintendent 
of Schools, Elias S. Hawley ; Health Physician, John S. Trowbridge. 

1845. — Mayor, Joseph G. Masten; (DemO Hiram Barton Qpposing 
candidate. Aldermen --YKr^X, Ward, Walter S. Stanard, Patrick Smith; 
Second Ward, Orlando Allen, Sherman S. Jewett ; Third Ward, Daniel 
Bowen, C. A. Van Slyck; Fourth Ward, Thompson Hersee, Charles Ess- 
linger ; Fifth Ward, W illiam Williams, Robert Russell. City Officers-^ 
Clerk, Joseph Stringham ; Attorney, Eli Cook ; Treasurer, William Lov- 
ering ; Superintendent of Schools, Oliver G. Steele ; Street Commissioner, 
Abram Hemstreet ; Surveyor, Henry Lovejoy ; Health Physician, S. F. 
Mixer ; Collectors, C. S. Pierce, Columbus Hart. 

1846. — Mayor, Solomon G. Haven ; Isaac Sherman opposing candi- 
date. Aldermen — First Ward, Patrick Smith, Jacob W. Banta; Second 
Ward, Sherman S. Jewett, Samuel T. Atwater ; Third Ward, George R. 
Babcock, Lester Brace ; Fourth Ward, Nelson Randall, Harlow French ; 
Fifth Ward, Benoni Thompson, Samuel Haines. City Officers — Clerk, M. 
Cad wallader ; Attorney, James MuUett ; Treasurer, James Crocker ; Super- 
intendent of Schools, Daniel Bowen ; Street Commissioner, Samuel G. 
Walker ; Surveyor, Henry Lovejoy ; Collectors, James Durick, D. S. 

1847. — Mayor, Elbridge G. Spaulding ; (Whig,) Isaac Sherman oppos* 
ing candidate. Aldermen — First Ward, ratrick Smith, Jacob W. Banta ; 
Second Ward, Orlando Alien, Latham A. Burrows ; Third Ward, Hiram 
Barton, Calvin Bishop ; Fourth Ward, Oliver G. Steele, Albert S. Mer- 
rill; Fifth Ward, Luman K. Plimpton, Watkins Williams. City Officers 
— Clerk, M. Cadwallader; Treasurer, John R. Lee; Attorney, James 

138 History of Buffalo. 

Sheldon ; Street Commissioner, Samuel G. Walker ; Superintendent of 
Schools, Elias S. Hawley ; Health Pbysiqian, John S. Trowbridge. 

1848. — Mayor, Orlando Allen; (Whig,; Israel T. Hatch opposmg can- 
didate. Aldermen— YiTSt Ward, Walter W. Stanard, John M. Smith; 
Second Ward, Daniel Bo wen, David M. Vanderpoel; Third Ward, 
Levi Allen, Paul Roberts ; Fourth Ward, Albert S. Merrill, Harry H. 
Matteson ; Fifth Ward, Luman K. Plimpton, Watkins Williams. City 
Officers — Comptroller, M. Cadwallader; Clerk, Jesse Walker; Attorney, 
John F. Brown ; Treasurer, John R. Lee ; Street Commissioner, Samuel 
G. Walker ; Surveyor, Henr^ Lovejoy ; Superintendent of Schools, Elias 
S. Hawley ; Health Physician, John S. Trowbridge ; Collectors, Silas 
Sawin, A. W. Wilgus, Isaac T. Hathaway. 

1849. — Mayor, Hiram Barton; (Whig,) Elijah Ford opposing candi- 
date. Aldermen — First Ward, Warren Lampman, Horace Thomas; 
Second Ward, Sherman S. Jewett, Myron P. Bush ; Third Ward, 
Charles F. Miller, Samuel A. Bigelow ; Fourth Ward, Albert S. Merrill, 
Harrison Park ; Fifth Ward, William K. Scott, Lucius F. Tiffany. City 
Officers — Comptroller, M. Cadwallader; Clerk, Jesse Walker; Attor- 
ney, Charles D. Norton ; Street Commissioner, Samuel G. Walker ; 
Superintendent of Schools, Daniel Bowen; Surveyor, Henry Lovejoy; 
Treasurer, John R. Lee ; Health Physician, John S. Trowbriage; Collec- 
tors, John R. Williams, Rodman Starkweather, William L. Carpenter. 

1850. — Mayor, Henr^ K. Smith ; (Dem.) Luman L. Plimpton, opposing 
candidate. Aldermen — First Ward, Jacob W. Banta, John Walsh ; Second 
Ward, Milo W. Hill, Myron P. Bush ; Third Ward, Paul Roberts, Miles 
Perry ; Fourth Ward, Harrison Park, Abram S. Swartz ; Fifth Ward, 
Lucius F. Tiffany, George L. Hubbard. City Officers — Coniptroller, M. 
Cadwallader ; Clerk, Horatio Seymour, Jr. ; Attorney, James Wadsworth ; 
Treasurer, Daniel G. Marcy ; Street Commissioner, Albert S. Merrill ; 
Surveyor, Henry Lovejoy ; Superintendent of Schools, Henry K. Viele ; 
Health Physician, Dr. S. F. Mixer ; Collectors, Charles Wormwood, 
Israel Gillett, Hezekiah A. Salisbury. 

1851. — Mayor, James Wadsworth; (Dem.) Sherman S. Jewett oppos- 
ing candidate. Aldermen — First Ward, John Walsh, Charles S. Pierce; 
Second Ward, Myron P. Bush, Milo W. Hill; Third Ward, Paul Rob- 
erts, Alexander McKay ; Fourth Ward, Harrison Park, Abram S. Swartz ; 
Fifth Ward, Lucius F. Tiffany, Georee L. Hubbard. City Officers— 
Comptroller, M. Cadwallader ; Clerk, William L. G. Smith ; Attorney, 
Eli Cook ; Treasurer, Cyrenius C. Bristol ; Street Commissioner, Abram 
Hemstreet ; Surveyor, Henry Lovejoy ; Superintendent of Schools, Oliver 
G. Steele ; Collectors, John G. Riley, Israel Gillett, Michael Doll, Patrick 
Milton ; Health Physician, Timothy T. Lockwood. 

1852.— Mayor, Hiram Barton; (Whig,} William Williams opposing 
candidate. Aldermen— First Ward, John Walsh, Charles S. Pierce ; Sec- 
end Ward, Milo W. Hill, John R. Evans ; Third Ward, Alex. McKay, 
Asaph S. Bemis ; Fourth Ward, Abram S. Swartz, James C. Harrison ; 
Fifth Ward, Albert L. Baker, H. S. Chamberlain. City Officers— Comp- 
troller, M. Cadwallader ; Clerk, Roswell L. Burrows ; Attorney, Cyrus 6. 
Poole ; Treasurer, George R. Kibbe ; Street Commissioner, James How- 
clls ; Surveyors, Henry Lovejoy ; Superintendent of Schools, Victor M. 
Rice ; Health Physician, John u. Hill. 

T^ 1853.— Mayor, Eli Cook, (Dem.); James C. Harrison and Elijah 
D. Efncr opposing candidates. Aldermen— First Ward, John Walsh, 

City Officials. 139 

Charles S. Pierce: Second Ward, John R. Evans, Chandler J. Wells; 
Third Ward, Alex McKay, Asaph S. Bemis ; Fourth Ward, James C. 
Harrison, Daniel Devening, Jr. ; Fifth Ward, Albert S. Baker, H. S. 
Chamberlain. City Officers — Comptroller, M. Cadwallader ; Clerk, Ros- 
well S. Burrows ; Attorney, Cyrus Poole ; Treasurer, George R. Kibbe ; 
Street Commissioner, James Howells ; Surveyor, Henry Lovejoy ; Super- 
intendent of Schools, Victor M. Rice ; Health Physician, Dr. E. P. Gray. 

1854. — Mayor, Eli Cook, (Dem.) Leroy Farnham, opposing candfi 
date. AlderincJi—FirsX. Ward. Charles S. Pierce, John H. Bidwell ; 
Second Ward. Chandler J. Wells, Daniel D.Bidwell ; Third Ward, Samuel 
Slade, G. W. Barker ; Fourth Ward, Hiram Chambers, John J. Weber ; 
Fifth Ward, Henry Lamb, Edward Bennett; Sixth Ward, Henry B. 
Miller, Solomon Scheu ; Seventh Ward, Edwin Thayer, A. S. Plumley ; 
Eighth Ward. Zoroaster Bonney, Bartley Logan : Ninth Ward, Charles 
F. Miller, Asaph S. Bemis ; Tenth Ward, Watkins Williams, Michael 
Clor; Eleventh Ward, James Haggart, Franklin A. Alberger; Twelfth 
Ward, Stephen W. Howell, Fayette Rumsey ; Thirteenth Ward, Joseph 
A. Bridge, Samuel Twichell, Jr. City Officers — Comptroller, William 
Chard ; Deputy-Comptroller, Nathaniel Hall ; Clerk, Koswell L. Bur- 
rows; Attorney, John Hubbell; Treasurer, John R. Evans ; Street Com- 
missioner, Jacob L. Barnes; Surveyor, George Cole; Superintendent of 
Schools, Ephraim F. Cook ; Health Physician, James M. Newman. 

This year the city boundaries were enlarged, and the Mayor elected 
for two years ; he ceased to be a member of the Common Council, which has 
since elected one of its own number as presiding officer, who in absence 
of the Mayor, discharges his duties. This year the position was bestowed 
upon Mr. Stephen W. Howell, (Rep.) The politics of the president 
show the political complexion of the board. 

1855. — Mayor, Eli Cook, (Dem.); President of the Council, Charles 
S. Pierce, (Dem.) Aldermen — First Ward, Charles S. Pierce, John H. 
Bidwell; Second Ward, Chandler J. Wells, Levi J. Waters: Third 
Ward, Samuel Slade, G. W. Barker ; Fourth Ward, Hiram Chambers, 
John J. Weber ; Fifth Ward, Frederick Dellenbaugh, Edward Bennett ; 
Sixth Ward, Heniy B. Miller, Solomon Scheu ; Seventh Ward, Andrew 
J. McNett, A. S. Plumley ; Eighth Ward, Z. Bonney, George J. Rehm ; 
Ninth Ward, Charles F. Miller, John F. Lockwood ; Tenth Ward, Wat- 
Idns Williams, Dennis Bowen ; Eleventh Ward, James Haggart, Fred- 
erick P. Stevens : Twelfth Ward, Lewis P. Dayton, Fayette Rumsey ; 
Thirteenth Ward, Joseph A. Bridge, William C. Prescott. City Officers 
—Comptroller^ William Ketchum ; Clerk, Roswell L. Burrows ; Attorney, 
John Hubbell ; Treasurer, John R. Evans ; Street Commissioner, Jacob 
L. Barnes; Surveyor, George Cole; Superintendent of Schools, 
Ephraim F. Cook; Health Physician, John Root. 

1856. — Mayor, Frederick 'P. Stevens, (Dem.) William A. Bird and 
Lewis L. Hodges, opposing candidates ; President of the Council, Lewis 
P. Dayton, (Dem.) Aldermen — First Ward, Jarvis Davis, John H. Bid- 
well; Second Ward, Chandler J.Wells, Levi J. Waters; Third Ward, 
James O'Brian, Norman Hagerman ; Fourth Ward, Hiram Chambers, 
Hiram P. Thayer; Fifth Ward, Fred. Dellenbaugh, Edward Bennett; 
Sixth Ward, Lorenz Gillig, Peter Recktenwalt ; Seventh Ward, William 
Hellriegel, A. S. Plumley ; Eighth Ward, Thomas Merrigan, George J. 

140 History of Buffalo. 

Rebm; Ninth Ward, Hunting S. Chamberlain, John F. Lockwood; 
Tenth Ward, Miles Jones, Dennis Bo wen ; Eleventh Ward, Henry P. 
Clinton, Edwin S. Dann ; Twelfth Ward, Lewis P. Dayton, John 
Ambrose ; Thirteenth Ward, Joseph A. Bridge, William C. Prescott 
City CT^^/rj— Comptroller. Charles S. Pierce } Clerk, William H. Albro; 
Attorney, Andrew J. McNett ; Treasurer, William L. G. Smith ; Street 
Commissioner, Patrick Smith ; Superintendent of Schools, Ephraim F. 
Cook ; Health Physician, Charles L Dayton. 

1857. — Mayor, Frederick P. Stevens, (Dem.) President of the Coun* 
cil, Lewis P. Dayton, (Dem.} Aldirmen—Ymt Ward, Michael Hagan, 
John H. Bidwell ; Second Ward, Chandler J. Wells, James B. Dubois; 
Third Ward, James O'Brian, Joshua Barnes; Fourth Ward, H. P. 
Thayer, Stephen Bettinger; Fifth Ward, Edward Bennett, Edwin 
Thayer ; Sixth Ward, Peter Recktenwalt, Christ. Rodenbach ; Seventh 
Ward, William Hellrigjel, Henry A. Goodrich ; Eighth Ward, Thomas 
Merrigan, Thomas O'Grady ; Ninth Ward, Hunting S. Chamberlain, S. 
W. Carpenter; Tenth Ward, Miles Jones, Henry Martin; Eleventh 
Ward, Henry P. Clinton, Edward S. Dann; Twelfth Ward, John 
Ambrose, Lewis P. Dayton ; Thirteenth Ward, Joseph A. Brids^e, Ben- 
jamin Dole. City C!^/rj— Comptroller, Charles S. Pierce ; Cleri^ Will- 
lam H. Albro; Attorney, Andrew J. McNett; Treasurer, William L. G. 
Smith ; Street Commissioner, Patrick Smith ; Superintendent of Schools, 
Ephraim F. Cook; Health Physician, Charles L. Dayton. 

1858. — Mayor, Timothy T. Lockwood, (Dem.) Frederick P. Stevens, 
opposing candidate. President of the Council, Daniel Devening, Jr., 
fpem.) AUermin-r'Tw^ Ward, Michael Hagan, John H. Bidwell; 
Second Ward, Chandler J. Wells, James B. Dubois; Third Ward, James 
O'Brian, Joshua Barnes ; Fourth Ward, Stephen Bettinger, Harry Her- 
see ; Fifth Ward, Daniel Deveninff, Jr., Bela H. Coleerove ; Sixth Ward, 
Christopher Rodenbach, Henry S. Miller ; Seventh Ward, George F. 
Pfeifer, A. S. Plumlcy ; Eight Ward, Thomas O'Grady, Thomas Tru- 
man; Ninth Ward, H. S. Chamberlain, S.. W. Carpenter; Tenth Ward, 
Henry Martin, Alonzo Tanner; Eleventh Ward, Henry P. Clinton, 
Edward S. Dann ; Twelfth Ward, John Ambrose, Lewis P. Dayton ; 
Thirteenth Ward, Benjamin Dole. City Officers — Comptroller, Charles 
S. Pierce ; Clerk, William H. Albro ; Attorney, Edwin Thayer ; Treas- 
urer, C. A. W. Sherman ; Street Commissioner, Levi J. Waters ; Super- 
intendent of Schools, Joseph Warren; Health Physician, H. D.Garvin. 

18J9. — Mayor, Timothy T. Lockwood, (Dem.) President of the 
Counal, Alon;co Tanner, (Rep.) Aldermen — First Ward, Michael Hagan, 
Peter Walsh ; Second Ward, Chandler J. Wells, James B. Dubois ; 
Third Ward, James O'Brian, James G. Turner ; Fourth Ward, Harry 
Hersee, Jacob Beyer; Fifth Ward, Daniel Devening, J. A. M. Meyer; 
Sixth Ward, Henry B. Miller, William Messingj Seventh Waid. George 
F. Pfeifer. F. M. Pratt ; Eighth Ward, Thomas Truman, Pliny F. Barton ; 
Ninth Ward, H. S. Chamberlain, F. A. Alberger ; Tenth Ward, Alonzo 
Tanner, Asaph S. Bemis ; Eleventh Ward, Henry P. Clinton, A. A. 
Howard ; Twelfth Ward, John Ambrose, Stephen W. Howell ; Thir- 
teenth Ward, Thomas Savage, Lewis L. Wileus. City Officers-^Comp^ 
troller, Charles S. Pierce; Clerk, Charles S. Macomber; Attorney, 
Edwin Thayer; Treasurer, C. A. W. Sherman; Street Commissioner, 
Levi J. Waters ; Superintendent of Schools, Joseph Warren ; Health 
Physician, P. H. Strong. 

City Officials. 141 

i860. — Mayor, Franklin A. Alberger, (Rep.) Henry K. Viele, opposing 
candidate; President of the Council, Asaph S. Bemis, (R.ep.) Alaermcn — 
First Ward, John Hanavan, Peter Walsh ; Second Ward, Nathaniel 
Jones, James B. Dubois ; Third Ward, Zadock G. Allen, James G. Tur- 
ner; Fourth Ward, Everard Palmer, Jacob Beyer; Fifth Ward, Charles 
Beckwith, J. A. M. Meyer ; Sixth Ward, Paul Goembel, William Mess- 
vas^ ; Seventh Ward, J. F. Schwartz, F. M. Pratt ; Eighth Ward, Robert 
Mollis, Pliny F. Barton ; Ninth Ward, James Adams, Jacob L. Barnes ; 
Tenth Ward, George R. Yaw, Asaph S. Bemis ; Eleventh Ward, Jacob 
Crowder, Austin A. Howard ; Twelfth Ward, Washington Russel, 
Stephen W. Howell ; Thirteenth Ward, Thomas Savage, Lewis L. Wil- 
eus. City Officers — Comptroller, Alonzo Tanner; Clerk, Charles S. 
Macomber ; Attorney, George Wadsworth ; Treasurer, John S. Trow- 
bridge; Street Commissioner, Levi J. Waters; Superintendent of 
Schools, Sanford B. Hunt ; Health Physician, C. C. WyckoflF. 


Zadock G. Allen, Alexander Brush ; Fourth Ward, Everard Palmer, 
Edward Storck ; Fifth Ward, Charles Beckwith, Andrew Grass ; Sixth 
Ward, Paul Goembel, Jacob Scheu ; Seventh Ward, J. F. Schwartz, F. 
M. Pratt; Eighth Ward, Robert Mills, Charles E. Felton ; Ninth Ward, 
James Adams, Eben P. Dorr; Tenth Ward, George R. Yaw, Asaph S. 
Bemis ; Eleventh Ward, Jacob Crowder, Austin A. Howard ; Twelfth 
Ward, Washington Russell, Stephen W. Howell; Thirteenth Ward, 
Thomas Savage, Thomas Rutter. City Officers — Comptroller, Alonzo 
Tanner ; Clerk, Otis F. Presbrey ; Attorney, George Wadsworth ; Treas- 
urer, John S. Trowbridge ; Street Commissioner, Levi J. Waters ; Super- 
intendent of Schools, Sanford B. Hunt ; Health Physician, J. Whittaker. 

1862. — Mayor, William G. Fargo, (Dem.); James Adams, opposing 
candidate; President of the Council, Charles Beckwith, (Dem). Alder- 
men — First Ward, John Hanavan, Patrick Walsh ; Second Ward, James 
B. Dut>ois, Joel Wheeler; Third Ward, Samuel D. Colic, Alexander 
Brush; Fourth Ward, Orson C. Hoyt, Edward Storck; Fifth Ward, 
Charles Beckwith, Andrew Grass; Sixth Ward, Paul Goembel, Jacob 
Scheu ; Seventh Ward, Fred Bangasser, William A. Sutton ; Eighth 
Ward, Robert Mills, Charles E. Felton ; Ninth Ward, Edward S. War- 
ren, Eben P. Dorr ; Tenth Ward, George R. Yaw, Asaph S. Bemis ; Elev- 
enth Ward, Jacob Crowder, Nelson K. Hopkins ; Twelfth Ward, Lewis 
P. Dayton, Peter Burgard ; Thirteenth Wara, Rodney M. Taylor, Thomas 
Rutter. City C|^^^rj— Comptroller, Peter M. Vosburgh ; Clerk, Charles 
S. Macomber ; Attorney, Harmon S. Cutting ; Treasurer, Joseph K. TyJer ; 
Street Commissioner, James O'Brian ; Surveyor, Francis F. Curry ; 
Superintendent of Schools, John B. Sackett; Health Physician, Sand- 
ford Eastman. 

1863. — Mayor, William G. Fargo, (Dem.); President of the Council, 
Charles Beckwith, (Dem.) Aldermen — First Ward, John Hanavan, Pat- 
rick Walsh ; Second Ward, James B. Dubois, George B. Gates ; Third 
Ward, Samuel D. Colie, William P. Moores ; Fourth Ward, Orson C. 
Hoyt, Richard Flach ; Fifth Ward, Charles Beckwith, Elnah Ambrose ; 
Sixth Ward, Paul Goembel, Jacob Scheu ; Seventh Ward, Frederick Ban- 
easser, William A. Sutton ; Eighth Ward, Robert Mills, Henry C. Persch ; 
Ninth Ward, Edward S. Warren, William L Mills ; Tenth Ward, George 

142 History of Buffalo. 

R. Yaw, Seth Clark ; Eleventh Ward, Jacob Crowder, Nelson K. Hop- 
kins ; Twelfth Ward, Lewis P. Dayton, Peter Burgard ; Thirteenth Ward, 
Rodney M. Taylor, Chnstian KUnck. City CT^^j— Comptroller, Peter 
M. Vosburgh ; Clerk, Charles S, Macomber ; Attorney, Harmon'S. Cut^ 
ting ; Treasurer, Joseph K. Tyler; Street Commissioner, James O'Brian ; 
Surveyor, Francis F. Curry ; ^uperintendent of Schools, John B. Sackett ; 
Health Physician, Sandfofd Eastman. 

1864. — Mayor, William G. Fargo, (Dem.) ; Chandler J. Wells, oppos- 
ing candidate ; President of the Council, Lewis P. Dayton, (Dem.) 
Aidermen^Yvc^X. Ward, Daniel Fitzgerald, Patrick Walsh ; Second Ward, 
Phineas S. Marsh, George B. Gates ; Third Ward, Alexander Brush, 
William P. Moores; Fourth Ward, George Fischer, Richard Flach ; Fifth 
Ward, Henry Nauert, Elijah Ambrose ; Sixth Ward, Paul Goembel, 
Jacob Scheu ; Seventh Ward, Thomas Clark, J. L. Haberstro ; Eighth 
Ward, George J. Bamler, Henry C. Persch ; Ninth Ward, James D. 
Sawyer, William L Mills ; Tenth Ward, Georc^e R. Yaw, Seth Clark ; 
Eleventh Ward, John Auchinvole, Nelson K. Hopkins ; Twelfth Ward, 
Lewis P. Dayton, Peter Burgard ; Thirteenth Ward, Angus McPherson, 
Christian Klinck. City Officers — Comptroller, Ralph Courter; Clerk, 
Charles S. Macomber; Attorney, Charles Beck with ; Treasurer, John 
Hanavan ; Street Commissioner, James O'Brian ; Surveyor, Francis F. 
Curry ; Superintendent of Schools, Henry D. Garvin ; Health Physician, 
Sandtord Eastman. 

1865. — Mayor, William G. Fargo, (Dem.) ; President of the Coun- 
cil, Nelson K. Hopkins, (Rep.) -<4/(t//r»»^— First Ward, Daniel Fitzgerald, 
James Ryan ; Second Ward, Phineas S. Marsh, Jonathan S. Buell : 
Third Ward, Alexander Brush, William P. Moores; Fourth Ward, 
George Fischer, Richard Flach ; Fifth Ward, Henry Nauert, Elijah 
Ambrose ; Sixth Ward, Paul Goembel, Jacob H. Pf hoi ; Seventh Ward, 
Thomas Clark, J. L. Haberstro ; Eighth Ward, George J. Bamler, John 
P. O'Brien ; Ninth Ward, James D. Sawyer, William L Mills ; Tenth 
Ward, George R. Yaw, William C. Bryant; Eleventh Ward. John 
Auchinvole, Nelson K. Hopkins; Twelfth Ward, Henry A. Swartz, 
Peter Burgard ; Thirteenth Ward, Angus McPherson, J. Kelly, Jr. City 
Officers — Comptroller, Ralph Courter; Clerk, Charles S. Macomber; 
Attorney, Charles Beckwith; Treasurer, John Hanavan; Street Com- 
missioner, James O'Brian ; Surveyor, Francis F. Curry ; Superintendent 
oi Schools, Henry D. Garvin ; Health Physician, Sandford Eastman. 

1866. — Mayor, Chandler J. Wells, (Rep.) ; William G, Fargo, oppos- 
ing candidate ; President of the Council, Joseph L. Haberstro, (Dem.) ; 
Aldermen— Ymt Ward, James Ryan, Thomas Whalen; Second Ward, 
Phineas S. Marsh, Jonathan S. Buell ; Third Ward, Alexander Brush, 
William P, Moores ; Fourth Ward, Jacob Beyer, Richard Flach ; Fifth 
Ward, August Hagar, John H. Shepard ; Sixth Ward, Solomon Scheu, 
Jacob Pfhol ; Seventh Ward, Joseph L. Haberstro, G. J. Buchheit ; 
Eighth Ward, George J. Bamler, John P. O'Brien ; Ninth Ward, Henry 
Morse, S. S. Guthrie ; Tenth Ward, George R. Yaw, William C. Bryant; 
Eleventh Ward, Nelson K. Hopkins, John Auchinvole; Twelfth Ward, 
John Glasser, Henry A. Swartz ; Thirteenth Ward, Angus McPherson, 
J. Kelly, Jr. City Officers — Comptroller, William F. Rogers ; Clerk, 
Charles S. Macomber; Attorney, George S. Wardwell; Treasurer, 
Joseph Churchyard ; Street Commissioner, Jeremiah Mahony ; Surveyor, 
John A. Ditto ; Superintendent of Schools, John S. Fosoick ; Health 
physician, Sandfora Eastman. 

City Officials. 143 

1867.— Mayor, Chandler J. Wells, (Rep.) ; President of the Council, 
William C. Bryant, (Rep.) Aldermen — First Ward, James Ryan, Thomas 
Whalen ; Second Ward, Joel Wheeler, John Pierce ; Third Ward, Alex- 
ander Brush, John A. B. Campbell ; Fourth Ward, Jacob Beyer, Anthony 
Stettenbenz ; Fifth Ward, August Hagar, J. H. Shepard ; Sixth Ward, 
Solomon Scheu, Felix Biegler ; Seventh Ward, J. L. Haberstro, G. J. 
Buchheit; Eighth Ward, George J. Bamler, Edward Madden; Ninth 
Ward, Henry Morse, S. S. Guthrie ; Tenth Ward, John Walls, William 

C. Bryant ; Eleventh Ward, Nathaniel B. Hoyt, John Auchinvole ; 
Twelfth Ward, John Glassar, James W. Parsons ; Thirteenth Ward, 
Aneus McPherson, John Kelly, Jr. City Officers — Comptroller, William 
F. Roeers; Clerk, J. D. Hoyt Chamberlain ; Attorney, (jeorge S. Ward- 
veil; Treasurer, Joseph Churchyard; Street Commissioner, Jeremiah 
Mahony ; Surveyor, John A. Ditto ; Superintendent of Schools, John S. 
Fosdick; Health Physician, C. C. F. Gay. 

1 868. — Mayor, William F. Rogers, (Dem.) ; Chandler J. Wells, oppos- 
ing candidate ; President of the Council, Paul Goembel, (Dem.) Alder- 
men — First Ward, Edward Bvms, George Chambers; Second Ward, 
John Pierce, W. B, Sirret ; Third Ward, Z. G. Allen, J. A. B. Campbell ; 
Fourth Ward, Frank Collignon, A. Stettenbenz; Fifth Ward. P. Rechten- 
wait, J. H. Shepard; Sixth Ward, Felix Biegler, Paul Goembel ; Seventh 
Ward, G. J. ouchheit, John Gisel; Eighth Ward, Edward Madden, 
John Sheehan ; Ninth Ward, S. S. Guthrie, Henry Morse ; Tenth Ward, 

D. C. Beard, W. C. Bryant ; Eleventh Ward, John Auchinvole, N. B. 
Hoyt ; Twelfth Ward, John Ambrose, J. W. Parsons ; Thirteenth Ward, 
John Kelly, Jr., A. McPherson. City Officers — Comptroller, R. D. Ford ; 
Clerk, Charles S. Macomber ; Attorney, David F. Day ; Treasurer, 
Joseph L. Haberstro ; Street Commissioner, Alexander Brush ; Surveyor, 
George VomBerge ; Health Physician, Dr. G. C. Mackay. 

1869. — Mayor, William F. Rogers, (Dem.); President of the Council, 
John Sheehan, (Dem^ Aldermen^Yxr^t Ward, Edward Byrns, George 
Chambers; Second Ward, John Pierce, W. B. Sirret; Third Ward, 
Zadock G. Allen, George G. Newm;»n ; Fourth Ward, F. Collie^non, Peter 
P. Miller; Fifth Ward, Charles Sauer, John Dietzer ; Sixth Ward, Paul 
Goembel, Henry Dilcher ; Seventh Ward, John Gisel, Donald Bain ; 
Eighth Ward, John Sheehan, Michael Keenan; Ninth Ward, Henry 
Morse, James VanBuren ; Tenth Ward, D. C. Beard, Robert Carmichael ; 
Eleventh Ward, John Auchinvole, E. S. Hawley ; Twelfth Ward, John 
Ambrose, Elisha SaflFord ; Thirteenth Ward, Angus McPherson, George 
Orr. City Officers — Comptroller, R. D. Ford; Clerk, George S. Ward- 
well ; Attorney, David F. Day ; Treasurer, Joseph L. Haberstro; Street 
Commissioner, Alexander Brush ; Surveyor, George VomBerge ; Super- 
intendent of Schools, Samuel Slade ; Health Physician, Byron H. Dag- 

1870. — Mayor, Alexander Brush, (Rep.); Thomas Clark, opposing 
candidate; President of the Council, John Pierce, (Rep.) Aldermen — 
First Ward, William B. Smith, George Chambers ; Second Ward, John 
Pierce, John Booth ; Third Ward, Samuel G. Peters, George G. New- 
man; Fourth Ward, Edward Storck, Peter P. Miller; Fifth Ward, 
Charles Groben, John Dietzer; Sixth Ward, Michael Lang, Henry 
Dilcher ; Seventh Ward, John Werrick, Donald Bain ; Eighth Ward, 
John Shehan, M. Keenan ; Ninth Ward, Frank A. Sears, James Van 
Buren; Tenth Ward, Lewis M. Evans, Robert Carmichael ; Eleventh 


144 History of Buffalo. 

Ward, Jacob Scheu, Elias S. Hawley ; Twelfth Ward, Isaac I. Van 
Allen, Elisha Safiford ; Thirteenth Ward, Almus T. Patchin, George Orr. 
City CT^fcrrj— Comptroller, R. D. Ford; Clerk, George S. Ward well; 
Attorney, Benjamin H. Williams; Treasurer, Joseph L. Haberstro; 
Street Commissioner, George W. Gillespie ; Surveyor, John A. Ditto ; 
Superintendent of Schools, Thomas Lothrop ; Health Physician, Byron 
H. Daggett. 

1871.— Mayor, Alexander Brush, (Rep.) ; President of the Council, 
John Sheehan, (Dem.) Aldermen— First Ward, W. B. Smith, Patrick 
Walsh ; Second Ward, John Booth, John Pierce ; Third Ward, S. G. 
Peters, John Kelly, Jr.; Fourth Ward, E. Storck, W. S. Ovens; Fifth 
Ward, Charles Groben, Joseph Bork; Sixth Ward, M. Lang, J, H. 
Fischer; Seventh Ward, John Werrick, George Rochevot; JSighth 
Ward, John Sheehan, Daniel Cruice; Ninth Ward, Frank A. Sears, 
James Van Buren ; Tenth Ward, L. M. Evans, R. Carmichael ; Eleventh 
Ward, J. Scheu, George W. Zink ; Twelfth Ward, I. I. Van Allen, C. L. 
Dayton : Thirteenth Ward, A. T. Patchin, William Dawes. City Officers 
— Comptroller, R. D. Ford; Clerk, Thomas R. Clinton ; Treasurer, 
Joseph L. Haberstro; Attorney, Benjamin H. Williams; Surveyor, John 
A. Ditto ; Street Commissioner, George W. Gillespie ; Supenntendent 
of Schools, Thomas Lothrop. 

1872. — Mayor, Alexander Brush; President of the Council, Edward 
Storck. Aldermen — First Ward, John Doyle, Patrick Walsh ; Second 
Ward, Benjanin Dickev, John Pierce ; Third Ward, J. A. Seymour, John 
Kelly, Jr. ; Fourth, Ward, E. Storck, L. P. Reichert ; Fifth Ward, Frank 
Sipp, Joseph Bork ; Sixth Ward, Jacob Bott, J. H. Fischer ; Seventh 
Ward, J. r. Einsfeld, George Rochevot; Eighth Ward, M. Keenan, 
Daniel Cruice; Ninth Ward, F. A. Sears, James Van Buren; Tenth 
Ward, Joseph Churchyard, R, Carmichael; Eleventh Ward, William 
Baynes, George W. Zmk ; Twelfth Ward, John Frank, C. L. Dayton ; 
Thirteenth Ward, A. B. Angus, A. Prenatt. City Officers — Comptroller^ 
Lewis M, Evans ; Clerk, Walter C. Winship ; Attorney, Frank R. Per- 
kins; Treasurer, Joseph Bork; Street Commissioner, James Franklin; 
Engineer, John A. Ditto; Superintendent of Schools, Josephus N. 

1873. — Mayor, Alexander Brush ; President of the Council, Frank 
A. Sears. Aldermen — First Ward, John Doyle, Timothy Cotter ; Second 
Ward, Benjamin Dickey, Ellis Webster ; Third Ward, J. A. Seymour,. 
J. W. Dennis ; Fourth Ward, Louis Herman. L. P. Reichert ; Fifth 
Ward, Frank Sipp, William Henrich ; Sixth Ward, Jacob Bott, J. H. 
Fischer; Seventh Ward, J. P. Einsfeld, George Reinheimer; Eighth 
Ward, M. Keenan, Charles Jessemin ; Ninth Ward, F. A. Sears, James 
Van Buren; Tenth Ward, J. Churchyard, R. Carmichael; Eleventh 
Ward, William Baynes, Archibald McLeish ; Twelfth Ward. John Frank, 
Christopher Laible ; Thirteenth Ward, J. J. Weber, A. Prenatt. City 
Officers— Com^troW^T, Lewis M. Evans; Clerk, Walter C. Winship; 
Attorney, Frank R. Perkins ; Treasurer, Joseph Bork ; Street Commis-^ 
sioner, James Franklin; Engineer, John A. Ditto; Superintendent of 
Schools, Josephus N. LameoT 

1874.— Mayor, Lewis P. Dayton; President of the Council, Benja-^ 
min Dickev. Aldermen-^First Ward, Timothy Cotter, John Doyle; 
Second Ward, Ellis Webster, Beniamin Dickey; Third Ward, J. W. 
Dennis, J. N. Mileham ; Fourth Ward, Louis Hermann, G. F. Zeller ; 

City Officials. 145 

Fifth Ward, William Henricfa» C P. Drcschcr; Sixth Ward. J, H. 
Fischer, Joseph Jergt ; Seventh Ward, George Reinheimer, J. P. Eins- 
feld; Eighth Ward, Charles Jessemin, Joseph Galley; Ninth Ward« 
James Van Buren, N. C. Simons ; Tenth Ward, R. Carmichael, P. J. 
Ferris ; Eleventh Ward, A. McLeish, George W. Zink ; Twelfth Ward, 
Christian Laible, L I. Van Allen ; Thirteenth Ward, A. Prenatt, N. H, 
Lee. Cii^ 0^/rj— Comptroller, Thomas R. Clinton ; Clerk, Walter C, 
Winship ; Attorney, Frank R. Perkins ; Treasurer, Joseoh Bork ; Street 
Commissioner, A. Stettenbenz; Engineer, George E. Mann; Superin^ 
tendent of Education, William S. Rice. 

1875. — Mayor, Lewis P. Dayton ; President of the Council, Elijah 
Ambrose. A/dermm— First Ward, John Doyle, John Hanavan ; Second 
Ward, Benjamin Dickey, William V. Woods; Third Ward, J. N. Mile- 
ham, Michael Danahy; Fourth Ward, G. F. Zeller, Charles Persons; 
Fifth Ward, C. P. Drescher. E. Ambrose ; Sixth Ward, Joseph Jeree, 
Jacob Hiemenz ; Seventh Ward, J. P. Einsfeld, J. C. Weber ; Eighth 
Ward, Joseph Galley, Michael Keenan ; Ninth Ward, N. C. Simons, C. 
D. Simpson ; Tenth Ward, P. J. Ferris, M. Nichols ; Eleventh Ward, 
George W. Zink, John Auchinvole ; Twelfth Ward, L L Van Allen, 
William Farmer; Thirteenth Ward, N. H. Lee, Charles Dickman. Citjf 
Officers — Comptroller, Thomas R. Clinton ; Clerk, R. D. Ford ; Attor- 
ney, Frank R. Perkins ; Treasurer, Joseph Bork ; Street Commissioner, 
A. Stettenbenz ; Engineer, George E. Mann ; Superintendent of Educa- 
tion, William S. Rice. 

1876. — Mayor, Philip Becker, (Rep.); President of the Council, 
Asaph S. Bemis. Aldermen — First Ward, John Hanavan, John White ; 
Second Ward, William V. Woods, A. L. Lothridge; Third Ward, 
Michael Danahy, Alfred H. Neal ; Fourth Ward, Charles Persons, Asaph 
S. Bemis; Fifth Ward, Elijah Ambrose, Jacob Benzinger; Sixth Ward, 
Jacob Hiemenz, Henry J. Baker; Seventh Ward, John C. Weber, Don- 
aid Bain ; Eighth Ward, Michael Keenan, John Pfeil ; Ninth Ward, 
Clarence D. Simpson, N. C. Simons ; Tenth Ward, Merritt Nichols, 
Peter J. Ferris; Eleventh Ward, John Auchinvole, Chris. Smith; 
Twelfth Ward, William Farmer, Isaac L Van Allen ; Thirteenth Ward, 
Charles Dickman, M. Shannon. City Officers — Comptroller, Lewis M. 
Evans ; Clerk, R. D. Ford ; Attorney, John B. Greene ; Treasurer, Henry 

D. Keller ; Street Commissioner, Charles Jessemin ; Engineer, George 

E. Mann ; Superintendent of Education, William S. Rice. 

1877. — Mayor, Philip Becker ; Comptroller, Lewis M. Evans ; Attor- 
ney, John B. Greene ; Treasurer, Henry D. Keller ; Engineer, George 
E. Mann ; Street Commissioner, Charles Jessemin ; Superintendent of 
Education, William S. Rice ; President of Common Council, John Auch- 

1878. — Mayor, Hon. Solomon Scheu; Comptroller, John C. Shec- 
han; Attorney, Price A. Matteson; Treasurer, Eugene Bertrand, Jr. ; 
Engineer, George Vom Berge; Street Commissioner, James V. Ha^es; 
Superintendent of Education, Christopher G. Fox ; President of Com- 
mon Council, John B* Sackett. 

1879. — Mayor, Hon. Solomon Scheu ; Comptroller, John C, Shee- 
han ; Attorney, Price A. Matteson ; Treasurer, Eugene Bertrand, Jr. ; 
Engineer, George Vom Berge ; Street Commissioner, Jaihes V. Hayes ; 
Superintendent of Education, Christopher G. Fox ; President of Com- 
mon Council, Merritt Nichols. 

146 History of Buffalo. 

1880. — Mayor, Hon. Alexander Br\ish ; Comptroller, John C. Shee- 
han ; Attorney, Edward C. Hawks ; Treasurer, Joseph Ball ; Engineer, 
Jasper T. Youngs; Street Commissioner, Michael Magher; Superin- 
tendent of Education, Christopher G. Fox ; President of Common Coun- 
cil, Milton E. Beebe. 

1 88 1. — Mayor, Alexander Brush; Comptroller, John C. Sheehan ; 
Attorney, Edward C. Hawks ; Treasurer, Joseph Ball ; Engineer, Jasper 
T. Youngs; Street Commissioner, Michael Majg^her ; Superintendent of 
Education, Christopher G. Fox ; President of Common Council, Milton 
E. Beebe. 

1882. — Mayor, Grover Cleveland ; Comptroller, Timothy J. Mahoney ; 
Attorney, Giles E. Stilwell ; Treasurer, Joseph Ball ; Engineer, Thomas'J, 
Rogers ; Street Commissioner, John Mahoney ; Superintendent of Edu- 
cation, James F. Crooker ; President of Common Council, George W, 
Patridge. Aldermen — First Ward, Dennis Hanrahan, John White; 
Second Ward, R. R. Heflord, Charles B. Doty ; Third Ward, Joseph 
Maycock, George W. Patridge ; Fourth Ward, August Beck, John A. 
Miller; Fifth Ward, Louis Fritz, William C. Bramard; Sixth Ward, 
Louis Knell, William Schier ; Seventh Ward, Henry Rochevot, George 
Baer; Eighth Ward, James Rogers, John Elliott; jNinth Ward, George 

E. Matteson, Alexander McMaster; Tenth Ward, H. H. Koch, Henry 
Montgomery ; Eleventh Ward, Marcus M. Drake, Charles A. Rupp ; 
Twelfth Ward, Peter Glor, Jr., John C. Han bach ; Thirteenth Ward, 
William H. Little, Henry H. Twichell. 

1883. — Mayor 5 Department — Mayor, John B. Manning, salary $2,^00; 
Messenger, Adam Nicken, $750. 

Comptroller s Department — Comptroller, Timothy J. Mahoney, salary 
$2,500; Deputy, A. A. Vandenburgh, $1,250; Chief Book-keeper, Joseph 
R. Williams, $1,600; Assistant Book-keepers, John F. Maione, $900, 
Edward McGuire, $900, Archie L. Allen, $900; Statement and Warrant 
Clerk, James W. Mather, $1,100; Recording Clerks, Thomas Beasley, 
$900, Alexander Kirsch, $800; Tax Sale Clerks. Frank Short, $1,500, 
Charles F. Kleber, $1,000; Clerk of Arrears, Patrick H. Mahoney ,.$1,000; 
Bond Clerk, Charles McDonough, $1,000; Auditor, Richard" W. Eng- 
lish, $1,200. 

Attorney's Department — City Attorney, Giles E. Stilwell, $2,500; 
Deputy, Edgar 6. Perkins, $1,250; Managing Clerk, James M. Cloak ; 
Clerk, Henry H. Guenther, $800 ; Detective, Carl Andersen, $720. 

Treasurer's Department — City Treasurer, Joseph Ball, $2,500 ; Dep- 
uty, James H. Carmichael, $1,500; Cashier, Charles J. Ball, $1,200; 
Book-keeper, A. J. Meyer, $1,200; Clerks, George E. Hunter, $800, C. 
Stockmar, $800, Joseph H. Kolb, $800, Henry L. Schnur, $800, Max 

F. Gese, $800, George Feldman, $800. 

Engineer s Department — City Engineer, Thomas J. Rogers, $2,500 ; 
Deputy, Daniel H. Sherman, $1,800; Assistants, Albert Krause, $1,250, 
F. L. Bapst, $1,250, George E. Fell, $1,250; Clerk, John A. Bodamer, 
$1,200; Draughtsman, Hugh Macdiarmid, $960. 

Street Department — Street Commissioner, John Mahoney, $2,000; 
Assistant, John W. Snyder, $1,250 ; Clerk, John S. Bid well, $1,050. 

Assessors Department — Assessors, John S. Robertson, Chairman; 
John H. Ludwig, Henry O. Dee, salary, each $2,000; Draughtsman, 
H. T. Buttolph, fooo ; Cferks, Dirck V. Benedict, $1,200, Joseph Mayer, 
$1,000, George T. Pfeiffer, Michael E. Hogan, Mathew Ludwig, Charles 
A. Dee, each $800. 

City Officers. 147 

City Clerk's Defartment— City Clerk, WHHam P. Burns, $w»o; 
Deputy, William A. Bird, $1,250; Warrant Clerk, B. F. Bruce, Jr., 
$1,000; Index Clerk, John G. Klein, $1,000. 

Educational Department — Superintendent, James F. Crooker, $2,500 ; 
Clerk, G. A. Fink, $1,200; Porter, John Doyle, $800; Compulsory Edu- 
cational Examiners, First District, Cortland Lake, per dav, $300; Sec- 
ond District, Charles Lipp, per day, $3.00 ; Teachers, one, $2,500 ; three, 
each $1,250; twenty-three, each $1,450; six, each $1400; four, each 
$1,100; fifteen, each $800; six, each $700; fifty -six, each $650; two hun- 
dred and seventy-six, each $570 ; thirty-four, each $500 ; twenty, each 
$450 ; ten, each $400. 

City Poor Relief Department- Overseer, Henry T. Kraft, $2,000; 
Deputy, John Zoll, $1,200; Clerks, J. J. Aeshbach, $800; John Arnold, 
$800 ; Jacob Crowder, $800. 

Judiciary Department — Suoerior Court Judges, James Sheldon, C. J., 
$6,000; James M. Smith, $6,000 ; Charles Beckwith, $6,000; Stenographer, 
George Macnoe, $2,000; Crier, P. D. Ellithorpe, $1,000; Clerk, John C. 
Graves, salaries and fees; Deputy, Charles B. Sill, $1,000; Special Dep- 
uty, E. P. Fields, fees ; Recording Clerk, John G. Cloak, fees ; Messen- 

fer, John Flynn, $750. Municipal Court Judges, George S. Ward well, 
2,000, George A. Lewis, $2,000; Clerk, Fred. Greiner, $1,000; Janitor, 
Charles Salter, $240. Police Court Justice, Thomas S. King, $3,000; 
Clerk, Butler S. Farrington, $1,200; Deposition Clerk, Louis Scheu, 

Common Ci?«^i/— President, Robert R. Hefford, $500; City Clerk, 
William P. Bums, $2,000; Deputy City Clerk, William A. Bird, $1,250; 
Sergeant-at-Arms, Norton B, Smith, per session, $2.00; Messenger, 
Frank S. M. Heinze, per session. $1.75. 

Aldermen — Twenty-six, each $250. First Ward, John White, Andrew 
Beasley ; Second Ward, Charles B. Doty, R. R. HeflFord ; Third Ward, 
George W. Patridge, Michael Callahan ; Fourth Ward, John A. Miller, 
Augustus Beck; Fifth Ward, William C. Brainard, Louis Fritz; Sixth 
Ward, William Shier, Jacob Hasselbeck ; Seventh Ward, George Baer, 
Alfred Lyth; Eighth Ward, John Elliott, John Davy; Ninth Ward, 
Alexander McMaster, William Franklin; Tenth Ward, Henry Mont- 

S ornery, Samuel V. Parsons ; Eleventh Ward, Charles A. Rupp, Marcus 
I. Drake ; Twelfth Ward, John C. Hanbach, George Denner ; Thir- 
teenth Ward, Henry H. TwitchelK William Summers. 

The city of Buffalo now has one hundred and thirteen miles of paved 
streets, grown from about fifty miles in i860; it is drained by one hun- 
dred and twenty-seven miles oi sewerage, to which will soon be added 
the great trunk sewer referred to heretofore ; a fire department equipped 
with nineteen engines, three hook and ladder companies, a fire alarm tele- 
graph system and all other necessary accessories for the protection of the 
citizens' property from fire ; a police force of about two hundred and thirty 
who preserve the public peace and safety of property ; more than one 
hundred churches that open their doors to the public for the worship of 
the Creator; a school system giving educational advantages that can 
scarcely be excelled ; and a press that occupies the field with eflBcient 
intelligence. These different departments, institutions and interests, with 
other special city topics, are treated in succeeding chapters. 


History of Buffalo. 

The growth of BufiFalo in the value «of real and personal property, 
and the amount of taxation from year to year since the enlargement of 
the city in 1854, is clearly shown in the following table: — 

Statement Showing the Valuation of Real and Personal Estate 

IN THE City of Buffalo from 1855 to 1883, inclusive, and 

THE Amount of Tax Levied for Each Year, 


Vftlnation of RmI 

Valwdoo or PmottU 

Total ValuatiooorRealaiid 







$ 28,128,039 00 

$ 7,360,436 00 

$ 35,488,475 00 

$ 30».a>3 3» 


29.356,291 00 

8,130,770 00 

37,487,061 00 

317,478 5* 


29,446,280 00 

6,065,720 00 

35,512,000 00 

345.834 47 


27,743.945 00 

5,485,080 00 

33,229,025 00 

364,904 48 


24.997,300 00 

4.743,080 00 

29,740,380 00 

304,783 33 


24.358.905 00 

5.893.470 00 

30,252,375 00 

303,443 i3 


24.232,955 00 

6,472,175 00 

30,705,130 00 

983,644 49 


24.677.»75 00 

6,944,180 00 

.3".62i,355 00 

984.196 19 


25,210,815 00 

6,528,045 00 

31,738,860 00 

334,504 83 


25.49».900 00 

6,5i7,5»o 00 

32.009,410 00 

403.857 33 


25,868,210 00 

7.730.030 00 

33,598,240 00 

504,918 86 


26,438,325 00 

8,5i9.375 00 

34,957,700 00 

485,444 16 


28,807,940 00 

io,755.»75 00 

39,563,"5 00 

640.713 45 


29.359.788 00 
30,289,215 00 

7.156.475 00 

36,516,263 00 

648,778 II 


7.350.835 00 

37,640,050 00 

657.954 74 


30,838,530 00' 

6,547.575 00 

37,386,105 00 

864,350 56 


31,990,095 00 

6.247.775 00 

38,237,870 00 

867,644 25 


32,755.730 00 

5,719,405 00 

38.475.135 00 

1,049,619 69 


33.587,040 00 

6,129.550 00 

39.716,590 00 

1.334,975 88 


33.943.735 00 

6,024.370 00 

39,968,105 DO 

1,449,390 39 


34,974.065 00 

6,105,000 00 

41,079,065 00 

1,487.679 19 


102,540,095 00 

9,455,860 00 

1 ".995.955 00 

1,430,778 87 


91,130,870 00 

8,844,705 00 

99.975.575 00 

i.545.39« 8» 


80.929,165 00 

7,947,380 00 

88,876,545 00 

1,343,589 89 


80,521,930 00 

7.634.380 00 

88,156,310 00 

1,036,501 97 


81,713.740 00 

7,523.580 00 

89,237,320 00 

1,964.064 90 


84.394.920 00 

7,859.545 00 

92,254.465 00 

1,595.445 " 


88,473,285 00 

9.623.750 00 

98,097.035 00 

1,583,665 15 


93. '67,090 00 

8,796.675 00 

101,963,765 00 

1,659.634 99 

The growth of BuiSTalo in population has been steadily upward since 
its earliest settlement, and at no period has the future looked more en- 
couraging in this respect than at present. The following figures from 
the State and United States census reports and the city directories of 
the past two years, show the increase of population by semi-decades since 
the year 18 10: — 




United States. 


United States . 













Growth of Buffalo. 149 


State 1835 15,661 

United States 1840 18,213 

State 1845 29,773 

United States 1850 42,261 

State 1855 72,214 

United States i860 81,126 

State 1865 94,210 

United States 1870 1 17,714 

State 1875 134,557 

United States 1880 I55,i34 

Buffalo City Directory 1882 182,5 ^ i 

Buffalo City Directory 1 883 199,892 

In concluding these chapters devoted to the settlement and general 
growth of the city, it is pleasant to add that every passing year is adding 
largely to the population, wealth and beauty of the Queen City ; that in 
the years to come, when it has reached the proud position that it may 
reasonably be expected to attain, its present proportions, grand as they 
are, may be looked back upon as almost insignificant. And now let us* 
in imagination, look out upon the good city from the observatory of that 
grand structure, the City and County Hall, and listen to the words of a 
gifted orator,* as they fell from his lips when the corner-stone was 
laid: — 

"We barely elance at the colossal statues of Justice, Industry, Com- 
merce and Art, for we see the very things themselves in the heavens 
above us and in the landscapes at our feet. Afar off in the south, blue 
hills end our extremest view and border the rich expanse of plain, dotted 
with happy villages and towns which curve eastward ana far north. 
The whole' country is alive with labor and with the rush of business and 
of pleasure. The roads radiating from the city in all directions are 
throns^ed with vehicles of every kind. On the west, and apparently so 
near tnat we can chuck a biscuit into it, sleeos Lake Erie, the first, ifnot 
the fairest of the great chain of mountain lakes — an opening to a navi- 
gation of thousands of miles, a ready access to a country almost as broad 
as Europe and richer far. It is whitened by not unfrequent sails, and 
above its green waters float the frequent trains of smoking propellers 
hurrying to and fro from our harbor. The fair coast of Canada con- 
fronts us smilingly, the mighty Niajgara, like molten silver gleams north- 
ward till its own curvings nide it, but the stationary cloud beyond 
betrays its presence and marks the position of the great cataract, and 
proclaims the fact that commerce by water beyond Buffalo is barred by 
nature. On every hand, in everv direction upon the land, you see long 
trains of cars impelled by locomotives towards and from us. You notice^ 
too, that commerce, impatient of the least delay, is bridging the wide, 
deep, rushinjB^ river. The harbor, once so contracted, is now capacious, 
and saucy little tues are pulling leviathans hither and thither with admi- 
rable dexterity and ease. And there, too, packed with long lines of 
freighted boats, towed by slow-paced horses, is the Erie canal, the popu- 
lator and best friend of the great West — the author, and so far as we 
know, the sure conservator of the fortunes of Buffalo. 

* Hon. Geofge W. Clinton. 

I50 History of Buffalo. 

'' In the city at our feet, here and there, <}uick puffs of steam and 
great steady columns of smoke indicate the positions of our great fur- 
naces and forges, and work-shops and factories of innumerable kinds. And 
then the beauty of the city ; but I will not dilate on that. We rest con- 
tent with stating that the main features of this wondrous picture are the 
growth of less than fifty years, and that no cause of that growth has 
ceased to act ; that each and every cause of it is now acting, and must 
act for ages with increasing power." 



Chanctenstics of tbe German Element— Proportion of German Population in Buffalo— Whence 
they Emigrated — The Old Lutherans— Mecklenburi^ers and Alsatians — The First German 
Settler in Buffalo— ''Water John"— Jacob Siebold's Arrival — The First Brewer, Rudolph 
Baer— An Early Teacher of Languages— The First Potter in Buffalo— The Oldest German 
Resident of the City— The German Element in 1828- Arrivals of Settlers in 1831 — llie 
German Press — The German Young Men's Association — Its Objects— First Membcn — 
Music Hall and its Projectors ^ German Musical Societies — Secret Societies— The German 
Bank of Buffalo — German American Bank — Buffalo German Insurance Company— The 
German Churches. 

GERMAN immigration to America since the beginning of the present 
century has been a powerful element in the growth and prosperity 
of the country. From no other foreign land has there come to us 
a class of people possessed in so great a degree of the characteristics 
necessary to render them peaceable, loyal and intelligent citizens of a 
free country. Industry, thrift, economy, patience in the toil necessary 
to procure for themselves homes, sociability, general temperance and 
intelligence above the average of our citizens — these are the marked fea^ 
tures of the German character that is so numerously represented in all 
of our large cities ; they readily adapt themselves to our form of govern- 
ment, adopt our language, connect themselves with our institutions while 
perpetuating their own» take an active and intelligent part in our politics, 
and by the general exercise of the traits of character above noted, soon 
gain a foothold and occupy a position of prominence wherever they make 
their homes. Wherever they settle in any considerable numbers, the 
Germans are prompt in the building of churches, the founding of useful 
societies and the patronage of schools, while the ratio of their increase 
in numbers, as compared with any given number of American families, 
is greatly in their favor. 

There are few Northern cities where the German element forms a 
larger proportion of the population than in Bu£Falo. In 1880, the 

The Germans of Buffalo. 151 

nationality of the parents of all the pupils registered in the public schools 
of the city, was as follows :^-- 

American 4,612 

German 9,088 

Irish 2,834 

Other Nationalities. 2,072 

In 1882, these proportions stood as follows : — 

American 5»46o 

German 10,301 

Irish ^ 2,633 

Other Nationalities 2,293 

At the present time it is probable that the Germans of Bufifalo num- 
ber more than 75,000 (50,000 of whom were born in this country,) little 
less than one-half of the entire population of the city, while the other 
figures we have quoted indicate that the German families who send chil- 
dren to our public schools, equal in round numbers, not the American 
school patrons alone, but all other nationalities combined. Whoever 
walks the streets of Buffalo, or reads the list of business firms and of the 
directors of our financial and other institutions, will not fail to be struck 
with the frequently recurring, well-recognized names of our German cit- 
izens; they are numerous, prominent and valuable constituents in the 
composition of the commercial and business structure of the com- 

The early settlers of Teutonic descent in Buffalo came almost entirely 
from Alsace (then under French rule; and southern Germany. This is 
accounted for by the fact that those sections of the Fatherland had been 
devastated by wars and were ruled in despotism and ruinous extrava- 
gance, which tended to drive the industrious peasantry to seek homes 
where their labors would be justly and permanently rewarded. Although 
northern Germany was at the same time under rigid despotic rule, it was 
of a vastly more humane and intelligent character. In Prussia especially, 
the peasantry were made to feel a strong confidence in their government 
and contentment with their position. As a consequence the settlers of 
Buffalo who came from northern Germany were later arrivals than their 
more oppressed southern brethren. 

The first considerable body of Prussians who came to Buffalo to 
settle were the old Lutherans; they reached here in 1839, under care 
of their persecuted ministers, Johann Andreas, August Grabau and L. F. 
E. Krause, from Erfurt, province of Saxony, having been driven from their 
native land on account of their religion. 

The Mecklenburgers constitute another important element in the 
north German emigration. The Seventh ward is largely populated by 
them, and they form an intelligent and successful class in the community. 

Alsace contributed largely to the earlier emigration from southern 
Germany. The Alsatians have allied themselves, in the broadest sense, 


152 History of Buffalo. 

with the great mass of the German population of the city, and were 
foremost in the establishment of German churches and schools, in organ- 
izing societies, and in other ways fostering the welfare of their country- 

These different foreign elements, all essentially one people, combin- 
ing the qualities necessary to success in life to which we have before 
referred, comprise within their ranks strong representative men — men 
who have not only been Influential in developing resources in trade and 
manufactures which have paved the way to remunerative employment, 
and resulting competency and contentment for their less prominent 
countrymen, but have, at the same time, taken an enviable position in 
politics, in social affairs, and the general advancement of the city's 

The first German settler in Buffalo, was John Kuecherer,* who came 
from Pennsylvania in 182 1. He became a somewhat noted character, 
and is now well remembered by old residents as " Water John,'* a title 
that was bestowed upon him on account of his business of carrying 
water for washing and other purposes, to the inhabitants of the village 
who were not otherwise supplied. Of Kuecherer's early history, and 
that of his antecedents, little is known. His daughter still lives in the 
city, but she is unable to throw much light upon the subject. It is 
supposed that he left Germany in one of the caravans that was driven 
from their homes to England during the last century, and was thence 
shipped to America. Kuecherer died in Buffalo, at the age of eighty- 

In 1822, Jacob Siebold, the second German settler in Buffalo, arrived. 
He came from Wurtemberg and afterwards became a successful and 
prominent business man. He was extensively engaged in the grocery 
business and had a store on Main street next door to the Hayden build- 
ing. He was also one of the founders of the Buffalo Board of Trade, 
and a director in the Buffalo Savings Bank. Few business men in the 
community have inspired a greater degree of respect than Jacob Sie- 
bold. His wife and children still reside in Buffalo. 

Following Siebold, Rudolph Baer came from near Harrisburg, 
Pennsylvania, and settled in Buffalo in 1826. He was originally from 
Switzerland and came to America in May, 18 14. He engaged in keep- 
ing the hotel at Cold Spring, and soon after built a brewery and gave 
the Buffalonians their first taste of beer made at home. It may not have 
been a beverage of very high quality, but Baer*s brewery was the foun- 
dation of a business in Buffalo, that has reached enormous proportions, 
and is still largely in the hands of Germans. Rudolph Baer died in 

* The spelling of this pioneer Gemuin's name is authorised by Mr. I. S. EUisoD» in n paper 
read by him before the Historical Society : a paper to which we are indebted for many of the facts 
used in this chapter. The name is spelled many different ways in various publications, but this is 
undoubtedly correct. 

vJ^^^2^^^^^s^^'£^^^2^ Cy^cA^ois^y 

Early German Settlers. 153 

1836, in the house now occupied by his son» Augustus Baer, No. 1503 
Main street* 

About the time of Baer's arrival here, Philip MeyerhofFer also set- 
tled in Buffalo. Little is known of him except that he was a teacher of 
languages in 1827, and officiated at German divine service in 1828, in a 
room over 533 Main street. 

Godfrey Heiser, who now lives at 209 Seneca street, came to Phila^ 
delphia from Germany in 18 19 and to Buffalo in 1828. He first engaged 
in the lime business on Exchange street, when it was "woods nearly all 
around him." He afterwards began the first pottery business in Buffalo, 
on the site of his present residence, where his son also conducts a grocery 
business. At a still later date Mr. Heiser was engaged in brewing at the 
same location, in connection with his brother. He retired from active 
business seventeen years ago. 

Although the first Buffalo directory, published early in the year 
1828, and supposed to contain a record of the names of the inhabitants at 
that time, gives no other distinctively German name, it is more than 
probable that others had settled here before that date. Mr. E. G. Grey, 
who is now the oldest German resident of Buffalo, is positive that when 
he arrived here in the spring of 1828, there were about seventy Germans 
in the village. If such was the case, however, there is little now reraem* 
beredof them; a small body of Germans arrived late in the year 1827. 
Christian Bronner, who died in April, 1881, was one of them. He has 
descendants now living in Buffalo. 

In the year 1828, German immigration increased rapidly. In that 
year the venerable E. G. Grey came ; he is now the oldest German resi- 
dent. Mr. Grey has been a successful grocer and a respected citizen in 
all that the term implies. Jacob Schanzlin also arrived in 1828 ; he brewed 
the first lager in Buffalo and kept a ** Wirthschaft *' on Main street where 
it is crossed by Scajaquada Creek, which was once a popular resort. Dr. 
Daniel Devening came to America in 1827, and a year later settled in 
Buffalo, being then 17 years old. He has enjoyed a successful career 
as a physician and was the first German elected to the Assembly from 
Buffalo. He still resides here, an honored representative of his coun- 

Michael Mesmer emigrated from Alsace in 1829 and settled in 
Buffalo. He was for thirty years engaged in the grocery, flour and 
feed business, and later was a member of the well known firm of furni- 
ture manufacturers and dealers, Weller, Brown & Mesmer. Other 
prominent Germans who settled here in i828-'29 were Jacob Roos, 
a successful brewer, Philip Beyer, George Goetz, George Metzger, 
Michael Hoist, George Hoist and Chistopher Klump ; the last six named 
were the first Germans who purchased homes of the Holland Land 
Company. Besides Mr. Mesmer, there arrived from Alsace in 1828-29, 

154 History of Buffalo. 

Joseph Haberstro, whose son was aftewards sheriff, Anthony Feld- 
man, George Gass, George Lang, Joseph Suor, Sebastian and Frieder- 
ich Rusch, George Urban, George Pfeifer and others. Many of these 
early settlers are dead. 

In 1830 Dr. Frederick Dellenbaugh settled in Buf&lo, and still lives 
here. He was honored with a seat iki the Aldermanic Board in i839-'40, 
the first German city oflBcial elected in BuflFalo. His career as a physi- 
cian has been a most successful one, and he is now a hale, well preserved 
and intelligent gentleman. 

Of the Germans who settled in Buffalo in 1 831, it may not he out 
of place to mention the names of Mr. John Greiner, Dr. John Hauen- 
stein, and Dr. F. C. Brunck ; while of the old Lutherans before referred 
to as having immigrated in 1839, ^^' Carl Weiss, who still lives here, Dr. 
Baethig, deceased, Orl Gruener, who died in Europe, all of whom 
arrived in Buffalo about i848-'49, and doubtless others might properly 
be mentioned as having left the impress of their individuality upon the 
city. But it will be seen that to follow in detail the tide of German 
immigration to this city during the past forty years is not only impos- 
sible, but undesirable ; all the prominent names could not possibly be 
mentioned, and to select from them would be invidious. It must suffice 
to state in a general way that the increase in the German population of 
the city has kept pace with her growth in other respects. Between the 
years 1850 and i860, immigration decreased somewhat, and it was 
further diminished by the War of the Rebellion. In that struggle, as 
is well known, the Germans of America took a prominent part. In the 
long roll of honor on which are inscribed the names of those of the 
heroes of Buffalo who risked or lost their lives to preserve the country 
as a unit, will be found so large a proportion of Germans, that all of that 
nationality may look upon it with pride and satisfaction. 

The general advancement of German social and business interests in 
Buffalo has been most effectively promoted by the early establishment and 
later wide extension and able conduct of the German press — an institution 
that could not fail to exert a powerful influence, especially during that 
earlier period before the German element had become so generally 
familiar with the language of their adopted country. In the columns 
of the press printed in their own familiar tongue, they read and learned 
of the government under which they came to dwell ; of the growth and 
prosperity of a country of free institutions ; of the character and social 
and business habits of the people with whom they found themselves asso- 
ciated ; the political issues of the time and the laws by which the people 
were governed, and thus sooner became active, intelligent constituents of 
the city's living structure, and prosperous, loyal American citizens. 

The first German newspaper published in Buffalo was called Der 
WltlthargfTt the initial number of which was issued December 2, 1837. 

German Newspapers. 155 

It was published by Mr. George Zahm, who also kept a German bookstore. 
Its editor was Mr. Stephan St. Molitor. Its brief salutatory, which smacks 
a trifle of apology for its appearance, contained the following announce- 
ment : — 

" The number of the German population of Buffalo has increased 
largely during the last four or five ^*ears, and the commercial as well 
as the political circumstances of this city have become of such great 
significance for the Germans living here, that the appearance of a news- 
paper in the German language has lonp^ been felt as an urgent need. Its 
aim is the instruction of the Germans in the politics of this country, and 
the communication of the most important American and European events. 
As this instruction will be one of its main purposes, it will advocate no 
special party, but try to develop independently and impartially those 
principles which are necessary to the preservation of the Constitution. 
On the more important political questions both parties will be presented, 
in order to enable' the readers to form their own judgment." 

It is clear that the first German newspaper started out in life upon a 
broad and independent policy. Der Wtltbuerger was Democratic in 
politics and in a leading editorial, counseled its readers to ally themselves 
with one or the other of the great parties, that they might thus retain 
their influence as citizens. The paper was a neat appearing sheet for 
that period, 19 by 25 inches in size and was fairly patronized with adver- 
tisements of the business of the village. Der Weltbuerger remained 
under control of George Zahm until the fall of 1844, when he was killed 
at a hickory-pole raising in Cheektowaga, by the falling of the pole. The 
paper was then edited by Jacob M. Zahm until the fall of 1845, being pub- 
lished by the administrators of George Zahm's estate. At the latter date 
it was purchased by Dr. F. C. Brunck and Jacob Domedian, who began 
its issue as a semi- weekly on a small sheet, at the same time enlarging the 
weekly. In 1848 the second German weekly was started by Mr. Carl Ess- 
linger, and called the Demokrat. When it was a year and a half old, 

it was purchased by Carl De Haas and Mr. Knapp, who began 

its publication as a daily — the first .in Buffalo in the German . language. 
In 1853 Der Weltbuerger and the Demokrat were consolidated and 
Mr. Knapp's interest bought by Mr. Fred Held, the new firm being 
Brunck, Held 4 Co. Der Weltbuerger was continued as the weekly 
edition, while the daily still appeared as the Demokrat ; the same policy 
is still in force. The entire establishment is at present in the hands of 
Mr. Held, Carl De Haas having sold his interest in 1859 and Dr. 
Brunck, June i, 1875. The Demokrat wields a powerful influence 
among the German population and is one of the leading papers printed 
in that language in the State. 

The next effort at German journalism in Buffalo was not so success- 
ful. In 1840 Mr. John M. Meyer issued a campaign paper called the 
Volksfreund; it was started in the Whig interest and its publication 
abandoned soon after the close of the campaign. January ist, 1843, the 

156 History of Buffalo. 

same gciitkmen, with Mr. Alexander Krause» issued the Freimuethigt^ and 
it, too, died in the summer of 1845. ^^ ^'^^ 7^^^ H. B. Miller established 
the Telegraph as a weekly, and in 1854 it was issued as a daily, by Miller 
& Bender. Philip H. Bender afterwards bought his partner's interest 
and then sold out to Mr. F. Geib, in whose hands the paper died in 1873. 
The Telegraph was first a Whig and afterwards a Republican organ. 

In 1850 Mr. I. Marie began the publication of the Luegenfeindy a 
small sheet devoted to the* interests of the Free Christian congregation. 
It lived about two years. In 1855, its successor was started in the 
Lichtfreundy by Joseph Egenter, but its life was likewise short. 

The Frete Presse a small sheet, was first issued in 1855, by Fred 
Reinecke. It lived seventeen years as a weekly, and was transformed 
into a daily in 1872. Reinecke, Zesch & Baltz followed Fred. Reinecke as 
its publishers ; it is now in the hands of Reinecke & Zesch. The Freie 
Presse is an influential paper, Republican in politics. 

Die Wachende Kirche is a religious journal which was started in 
1856, and was pubhshed by Rev. J. J. A. Grabau ; it is now issued semi- 
monthly, by Rev. J. Lange. 

In 1857 the Buffalo Patriot was started as a daily by Messrs. Young 
& Vogt ; it lived but a few days. The Buffalo Union^ another Republi- 
can daily, started in 1863, by Messrs. Reinecke & Storcke, survived but 
two 'days. The Buffalo /^//r;/^/, first issued the same year, by Messrs. 
Nauert, Hansman & Co., was soon after its establishment, purchased by 
Dr. Carl De Haas and Fr. Burow and afterwards passed into the hands 
of Philip Bender ; it was subsequently merged with the Buffalo Telegraph. 
The Journal was alterwards re-established by a Mr. Nether and lived 
through one political campaign. In 1868 a paper of a mixed religious- 
political character, was established by the German Printing Association ; 
it was named the Volksfreuud, and was devoted to the interests of the 
Roman Catholic church and Democracy. This journal is still living and 
is an ably conducted sheet. 

On the 16th of October, 1875, the Ty?L\\y Republikaner, was first issued 
by Mr. I. S. Ellison, as an uncompromising Republican organ. On the 
1st of January, 1878, its proprietary rights were transferred to the Ger- 
man Republican Printing Association, Mr. Ellison continuing as its editor 
until November nth, 1879; ^ week later the Republikaner w^s consol- 
idated with the Freie Presse. 

In 1878 another politico-religious paper was established, to be 
devoted to political independence and the interests of the Protestant 
Church ; it was called the Evangelische Gemeindezeiiung^ but its name 
was soon after changed to Volksblatt fuer Stadt und Land. This paper 
was afterwards converted into a daily, but its success was not sufficient 
to make it permanent, and it was suspended on the last day of January, 

German Newspapers. 157 

There arc two other German weeklies, both of which are devoted 
to Roman Catholic literature — the Aurora^ pubUshed by Mr. C. Wiede- 
mann, since 1858, and the Christliche Woche conducted by Rev. Joseph 
Sorg, since February, 1875, 

In September, 1875, the first German Sunday paper was established 
in Buffalo, by Messrs. Haas, Nauert & Klein ; it was called the Sun- 
day Heraldy it lived but a few months. In January, 1876, the second 
Sunday journal made its appearance in the Tribune^ it was established 
by a number of striking printers, and during the fall of 1877, 
under the influence of the great railroad strikes, it was issued as a daily. 
Its unpopular policy and incompetent management compelled it to sus- 
pend in April, 1878, as a daily. The Sunday issue is still continued by 
the German Republican Printing Association, and is widely read. 

In the summer of 1878, the Arbeiterstimme am Erie was started; 
it advocated communistic principles and quite properly died before the 
anniversary of its birth. 

Die Laterne was established February 21, 1880, by Emile C. Erhart. 
Its name was changed to Das Banner^ August 14, 1880, and it at 
the same time passed into the hands of P. Eby and C. Stienke. After 
the beginning of its second year, it was continued by a stock company, 
and collapsed February 10, 1883. It was a Greenback organ. 

The Buffalo Wecker, was started October 30, 1880, by Emile C. 
Erhart, and continued a precarious existence for seven weeks. 

This completes the list of German publications in Buffalo. Those 
of them that are still in existence are creditable alike to their publishers, 
editors and the German speaking portion of the community that sup- 
ports them. 

Scarcely less than the influence of the press upon the Germans of 
Buffalo, has been that of the numerous societies that have been organized 
among them. Foremost among these is the German Young Men's Asso- 
ciation of Buffalo. On the loth day of May, 1841, nine young men who 
saw the need of fully acquainting themselves with and preserving the 
literature of their native land, joined together to found a society (or the 
accomplishment of that laudable object. Their names* were: F. A. 
Georger, now president of the German Bank ; Dr. John Hauenstem, m 
prominent German physician ; Jacob Beyer, ex-police commissioner ; 
Stephan Bettinger, Karl Neid hard t, George F. Pfeifer, Wilhelm RudolpA, 
and Adam Schlagder. The object of the society, as set forth in its 
incorporation act, is : — 

" To propagate the knowledge of the treasures of the German lit- 
erature, and to cause the preservation of the German language, and 
the growth of the German spirit and self-conscience." 

* Of these, one, Mr. Bettinger, was bom in Lorraine ; two, Messrs. Hauenstein and Rudolph, 
came from Switzerland ; five, Messrs. Beyer, Niedhardt, Georger and Pfeifer, were Alslitians, and 
only Schlagder, was from Germany proper, the Palatinate.— ^r. EUison*s Paper, 

158 History of Buffalo. 

The name first adopted by the society, was the " German and Eng- 
hsh Literary Society. '* Meetings were held weekly, and the proceed- 
ings were made up principally of debates and discourses or declamar 
tions given alternately in the German and English languages. The 
society rapidly increased under its wise counsels and persistent activity, 
and the nucleus of its present splendid library was soon gathered. 

On the nth of September, 1841, the nameof the society was changed 
to that of " The German Young Men's Association of the City of Buffalo." 
It employed a librarian, and recording and corresponding secretaries. 

At the end of the year 1845, the number of members had increased 
to one hundred and twenty-two, and the library to four hundred and 
thirty volumes, and it was resolved to apply for its incorporation, which 
was effected by act of the Legislature of the State of New York, May 
12, 1846. In this act, by which the nameof " The German Young Men's 
Association of the city of Buffalo," was retained, it was said : — 

" And by that name (the Association) shall have succession for the 

[nirpose of establishing and maintaining a library, museum, reading rooms, 
iterary and scientific lectures, exercises and debates, and other means of 
promoting moral and intellectual improvement, with power for such pur- 
poses," etc. 

This worked a complete transformation of the Association. Its 
object now was : — Improvement in the knowledge of the treasures of 
German and English literature, co-operation in the cultivation of the 
mind, and promotion of the arts and sciences. The meetings, which 
heretofore had been hours of exercises, for which every member had to 
prepare himself, and in which the one was the teacher of the other, now 
became literary seances. The principal aim now was to make additions 
to the library, and by its books and their circulation among the members, 
prosecute the object of the Association. The restriction as to age of 
members was done away with, and instead of weekly meetings, monthly 
business meetings were held, at which every member had a right to be 
present; and also annual meetings, for the purpose of rendering state- 
ments of work performed and the election of officers. Debates, lectures 
and discourses were now held only from time to time, and non-members, 
as well as members of the Association, were engaged for lectures and 
other exercises, and the general public admitted. The use of the Ger- 
man language became more general, and special attention was paid to 
the increase of German books in the library, while other libraries in this 
city directed their attention almost exclusively to English literature and 
contained but few German books. 

In 1857, regular monthly meetings were discontinued and the whole 
management entrusted to the officers of the Association, and a govern- 
ing committee of ten members. This change caused dissatisfaction among 
the members, and many gave up their membership ; so that, on the 3d of 
April, 1 861, the Association numbered only fifty-four members. 


S2^i^e^ ^^cea^c^, J^ 

The German Young Mens Association. 159 

At the general meeting of October 2, 1861, the governing committee 
was abolished, and the former monthly business meetings for all members 
restored. The consequence was, that interest in the society and its 
objects revived, and in the year 1866, the Association numbered two 
hundred members, while the library had increased to 2,273 volumes. 

In that year the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Association was cele- 
brated by orations, a banquet, and a ball, on which occasion $800 were 
voluntarily contributed by the members for the purpose of increasing 
and improving the library. By means of these contributions the library, 
in the spring of 1869^ had increased to 3,123 volumes. 

In the year 1870, a system was introduced whereby periodicals of a 
scientific and literary character, published in Germany, were placed on 
certain tables in the room of the Association, where they could be read 
by the members during the hours that the library was kept open. This 
arrangement having proved a success, has since been continued. 

In the same year it was resolved to admit as extraordinary members, 
(that is, members who were not entitled to vote or hold office,) widows, 
women, who are of age, self-dependent and unmarried, and on the appli- 
cation of their guardian, those who are under age but grown up. 

In April, 187$, the Association had a surplus of $800 at its disposal, 
and it was decided to set aside the sum of $S00, the interest of which, 
and that only, should be expended in the purchase of books for the 

The membership of the Association has now reached a large num- 
ber, and the library contains over 7,000 volumes. The difficulty of secur- 
ing a proper hall for the Saengerfest of 1883, led Messrs. J. F. SchoelU 
kopf and Philip Becker, to purchase the property corner of Main and 
Edward Streets, with the view of transferring the same to the German 
Young Men's Association. At the suggestion of these purchasers, and 
Mr. A. Ziegele, it was resolved to take a deed of the land, and erect a 
structure suitable for all the uses of the Association as well as for the 
festival of 1883. 

The project was rapidly developed, and in November, 1882, the col- 
lection of funds for the proposed building was begun. Messrs. Philip 
Becker, J. F. Schoellkopf and Albert Ziegele, Sr., each contributed $i,oco 
to the object, and many other liberal Germans gave sums nearly as 
large ; each person contributing $50 or more, becoming a life member. 
Plans were prepared by architects Esenwein and Deisler, for a building 
which, with the grounds, cost about $225,000, and bonds were issued 
in sums of $25 and upwards, to run for thirty years, with option of col- 
lecting them any time after ten years ; these bonds were issued to the 
amount in gross of $150,000, at five per cent, interest In this splendid 
building, now just completed, the library of the Association occupies a 
commodious and convenient room on the second floor, 33 by 60 feet in size. 

i6o History of Buffalo. 

and located on the corner of the two streets upon which the building 
fronts. The great Saengerfest of 1883 ^^^ held in the building, the large 
hall being calculated to seat about six thousand persons. 

The German Lutheran Young Men's Association was organized for 
the intellectual improvement of its members, chiefly through a medium 
of a library and reading room, which is kept open every evening. 
There are now about 3,000 volumes in the library, and the rooms are 
located at 659 Michigan street. 

The Germans are a musical as well as a social people, and their sing- 
ing societies are found wherever Germans have settled in any consider- 
able numbers. The oldest German singing society in Buffalo is the 
Liedertafel, which was founded May 9, 1848. Its first officers were : H. 
Wiser, President; F. Albrecht, Secretary ; C.Huis, Treasurer; A. Wun- 
derlin. Librarian. The following named gentlemen have served this 
society as musical directors : John Dossert, Frederick Hoddick, C. Adam, 
W. Groscurt, Sig. J. Nuno, C, W. F. Mueller, Frederick Erfling and 
Joseph Mischka, who is now the efficient incumbent of that position. In 
1853 '* Das Liederkraenzchen '' was organized, and from this society the 
'< Saengerbund " emerged on the 20th of April, 1855, with the following 
named members: C. W. Braun, H. Duehrfeldt, C. Voss, E. Besser, A. 
Holzhausen, and nine others. The musical directors of this society were 
C. W. Braun and Prof. Friedrich Federlein. In 1869, two more singing 
societies were formed, the " Harugari-Maennerchor," September 19th, 
and the " Orpheus " October 29th, of that year ; the latter society sprang 
from the Liedertafel, with the following founders : A. Brunn, A. B. Fel- 
gemacher. Otto Ulbrich, F. Lautz, A. Lautz, C. KroU, M. Stark and 
others. The first musical director was Ernst Schultz, who was succeeded 
by Carl Adam. Besides these societies there are the ** Arion Singing 
Society," August Goehle, director ; the " Germania Singing Society," 
August Goehle, director ; the " Harmonie Singing Society," John Laux, 
director ; " East Buffalo Maennerchor," the " St. Stephens Maennerchor." 
J. Eitelman, director ; the ** Helvetia Saenger-Verein," William Lutz, 

On the 7th of March, 1853, the Buffalo Turnverein was organized in 
Roth's Hall, on Michigan street. The following twenty gentlemen were 
its founders: Louis Allgewaehr, Gustav and Frederic Duehrfeldt, Her- 
man Weber, Heinrich Nauert, Gustav Spitznagel, Martin Riebling, Karl 
and Gotthard Krech, Ed. Gerstenhauer, Wilhelm Moeser, A. Liesenhopp, 
John Haffner, Anton Heilman, George Hirsch, Valentine Friedrich, James 
Von Arx, G. Bachman, G. Berger and A. Kaltenegger. The Turnverein 
has enjoyed a very prosperous career and now possesses a valuable 
property on Ellicott street, embracing a commmodious Turn Hall. 

In the different secret societies the Germans of Buffalo have for many 
years been conspicuous. As early as 1847 they organized the " Walhalla" 

German Societies — Banks. i6i 

lodge of the order of Odd Fellows, since which time several other lodges 
have been organized by Germans of this order. In 1849 ^be first German 
Free Mason lodge was formed by James Wenz, Dr. Ehrman, Moritz 
Eschenbach and Jacob Weil; it was called the '* Concordia." Since 
that time several other lodges of this order have been established, 
which are properly referred to in the chapter on the Masonic order of 

The distinctively German order " Harugari/* is very strongly repre- 
sented in Buffalo. The constitution of this order directs the exclusive 
use of the German language in its proceedings and makes it a duty to 
do everything possible for the preservation of the language in other ways* 
The first lodge of this order was founded in Buffalo in 1848 and named the 
" Columbia Lodge No. 1 1 ;" the second was the " Goethe No. 36.*' Both 
of these were soon dissolved. Following them '' Black iRock Lodge No. 
35 " was founded in 1853 J " Chcrusker No. 47" in 1854 ; " Robert Blum 
No. 54 " in 1855 ; " Buffalo No. 10 " in i860 ; " Ludwigs No. 105," " Buffalo 
Plains No. in" and " German No. 1 19 " all in 1865 ; " Erie County No. 165 " 
ini868 ; '' Goethe No. 222 " in 1870 ; " Loche " in 1875 ; " Bal dur " in 1876, 
and " Freundschaft " in the same year. The order is in a very flourish- 
ing condition. 

In matters relating to finance, the Germans of Buffalo have acquired 
a position that is enviable. The German Bank of Buffalo was organized 
May 6, 1 871, and opened its doors for business about June ist,of that year. 
Its first officers were F. Augustus Georger, president ; Philip Becker, vice- 
president ; S. W. Warren, cashier. Its incorporators were F. Augustus 
Georger, Philip Becker, Philip Houck, J. F. Schoellkopf, Jacob Dold, R. 
Hoffeld and F. C. Brunck. This institution began business with a capital of 
$100,000, in 1876 under the Erie County Savings Bank, corner of Main and 
Court streets, and removed to its present location in the German Insur- 
ance Company's building when it was first occupied. The German Bank 
has, since its organization, paid an annual dividend of 10 per cent, and has 
now an accu^iulated surplus of $100,000. Its present officers are F. 
Augustus Georger, president; Philip Houck, vice-president ; Eugene A. 
Georger, cashier. The directors are : — F. Augustus Georger, Philip 
Houck, J. F. Schoellkopf, Jacob Dold, R. Hoffeld, Albert Ziegle, Sr., 
Dr. John Hauenstein. This bank is one of the most prosperous financial 
institutions in the cit}'. 

The German American Bank was organized May 10, 1882, and began 
business at 424 Main street, corner of Court, May 22d, with a capital of 
$100,000, which is fully paid in. Its business has rapidly increased and 
now reaches half a million dollars. The officers of the German Ameri- 
can Bank are : Henry Hellriegel, President ; Alexander Martin, Vice- 
President ; Henry W. Burt, Cashier. The Directors are Henry Hell- 
riegel, Charles Greiner, John P. Diehl, Alexander Martin, L. L. Lewis, 
John Schaefer, Francis Handel, Joseph Timmermann, Henry Breitweiser. 

1 62 

History of Buffalo. 

As far back as 1867, the Buffalo German Insurance Company was 
organized, with a capital of $100,000, which was increased in 1871 to 
$200,000. The first officers of the company were : E. G. Grey, President ; 
Philip Becker, Vice-President; Alexander Martin, Secretary. The 
incorporators were : E. G. Grey, Philip Becker, Julius Fuchs, Michael 
Mesmer, Solomon .Scheu, J. F. Schoellkopf, Philip Houck, Oliver J, 
Eggert, Albert Ziegele, F. C. Brunck, Stephan Bettinger, F. Augustus 
Georger, Jacob Beyer, R. HoffeldJ' Joseph Timmermann, Henry C. 
Persch. The first offices of this company were located on the north, 
east corner of Main and Mohawk streets. In 1869 the following named 
officers were elected: Philip Becker, President; Julius Fuchs, Vice- 
President; Alexander Martin, Secretary. In 1874 Mr. Martin resigned 
as Secretary and Oliver J. Eggert was elected to the vacancy. The 
present directors of the company are : Louis P. Adolff, Philip Becker, 
Charles Boiler, F. C. Brunck, Adam Cornelius, John P. Diehl, Jacob 
Dold, Julius Fuchs, F. A. Georger, George Goetz, E. G. Grey, John 
Hauenstein, William Hellriegel, Jacob Hiemenz, Philip Houck, Michael 
Mesmer, N. Ottenot, Henry C. Persch, J. F. Schoellkopf, Albert 

The German Insurance Company does business in seventeen States 
as follows: California, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, 
Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New 
York, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and in the District of 

The following figures show the remarkably successful business that 
has been done by this company during the past sixteen years : — 


February 15, 1867, 

1 100.000.00 

Nrr suKPLUs. 



1, 1868, 


% 4.593.94 

• 5,275.59 


1. 1869. 





I, 1870, 





1, 1871, 





1, 1872, 

3 > 8,337.34 




1, 1873. 





1, 1874, 





1, 1875. 





1, 1876, 





1, 1877. 



1 10,28046 


1, 1878, 





1, 1879, 





1. 1880. 





1, 1881 





1, 1882. 





1. 1883, 





German Churches. 163 

In 1876, this Company erected the substantial and beautiful iron 
structure fronting on Lafayette Square and Main street, at a cost of $275,- 
ocx>. In this building are located the convenient and commodious offices 
of the company. The building is in many respects the finest architect- 
ural work in the city. 

The Germans are also fully represented in most other lines of busi- 
ness in the city, and especially in manufacturing, as will be learned in 
succeeding chapters. Each generation is brought up to a clear under- 
standing of some branch of mercantile business, or is instructed in some 
useful trade, so that all are workers in some direction, and fitted to add 
in their proper ratio to the wealth and growth of the community. 

German Churches. 

St. Louis Church, — The Germans of Buffalo took an early active 
interest in religious matters, which has been since continued, and there 
are now in the city more than thirty church organizations, many of them 
owning costly edifices, which may be properly classed as German in 
character. The first of these in point of organization, is what is known 
as the St. Louis Church, situated on the corner of Main and Edward 
streets. The first church building that stood on that site, was erected in 
1832. In 1828, Rev. Father Baden, the first Catholic priest ordained in 
the United States, came to Buffalo and was the guest of the distinguished 
and philanthropic pioneer, Mr. Louis LeCouteulx, for several weeks. 
During that period and doubtless at his suggestion, Mr. LeCouteulx 
resolved to donate the site of the St. Louis church to Bishop Dubois. 
Both Father Baden and Mr. LeCouteulx placed themselves in communi- 
cation with the Bishop, who came to Buffalo in 1829, and said mass in 
the old court house. He was surprised to find so large a number of 
Catholics in the place, and after his return to New York, at his earnest 
solicitation, Rev. John Nicholas Mertz, who had returned from Europe 
the second time, consented to become a missionary to Buffalo and the 
surrounding country. He first held services here in a frame building on 
Pearl street, in rear of what is now the American Block. In 1832 the 
first primitive church was erected on the site, a frame building with 
cross beams of logs ; a man named George Schneider, doing the work. As 
soon as the Catholics in other near localities learned that a church had been 
established in Buffalo, they came to the village in such numbers that the 
little church was too snuill to accommodate them ; in consequence the 
Irish element branched off and built the St Patrick's church. In 1835, 
the French and German Catholics erected the present large and hand- 
some St. Louis church. It was built directly over the old church, which 
after the brick church was finished, was demolished and carried outside. 
Peter Kraemer had the contract for building the brick church. In 1838 
or 1839, Rev. Father Mertz returned to Europe. He had been succeeded 

164 History of Buffalo. 

in 1836, by Rev. Alexander Pax, who rendered valuable service for 
eight years, and was succeeded by Rev. Francis Guth ; he also remained 
eight years. Then came in succession the Rev. Fathers Raffeiner, 
Weninger, Dieterz, Serge de Scthoulepnikoff and lastly, the present 
pastor, Rev. Father Sorg, who took charge of the church August 25, 
1867. The first Board of Trustees of this church, were Michael 
Werle, Peter Kraemer, Peter Eslinger, George Zahm, George 
Bangasser, John Dingens and Peter Zintz. The French portion of the 
society separated from the parent church about thirty years ago, leaving 
the congregation distinctively German. The present Board of Trustees 
are Paul Hausle, Jacob Davis, Francis Spoeri, Joseph Bronner, Mathias 
Smith, Peter Paul and Frank Deck. A school was established in con- 
nection with the church in 182 1. It is now in very successful operation 
with about five hundred and eighty pupils and eight teachers. 

St. Boniface Church, — In March, 1849, ^ ^^^ German Catholics who 
lived in the vicinity of Mulberry street, in the midst of what was then more 
than half a wilderness, resolved to build a church. Accordingly two lots 
on Mulberry street were bought, each twenty-five feet wide, and to this 
Mr. A. D. Patchen added by the gift of 100 feet. A frame building was 
begun and on the 15th of May, 1849, Rev. Father Kunze held the first 
services in the church. The society then comprised about forty families. 
A parsonage was built and a school house, which was finished in April, 
i8$o. During the year 1851, the church was enlarged, a tower built and 
a bell provided. In the spring of 1854, Father Zacharias Kunze was suc- 
ceeded by Rev. Rudolph Folltoius, who served five years. In 1856 the 
church was again found to be too small to accommodate the growing 
congregation and the society resolved to erect a new brick structure 
55 by 120 feet. The corner stone was laid in November of the same year 
and the church was consecrated June 15, 1857 ; its cost was about $10,000. 
The same year the society was incorporated under the name of St. Boni- 
face Church. Rev. Follenius died May 27, 1859, ^^^ Rev. H. Feldmann 
was called to the office : he served until January ist, 1864. During his 
ministry, the church was refurnished and the property increased by the 
purchase of two lots. In 1861 a large brick school house was built, and 
in 1864 a large organ was purchased at a cost of $2,000. Between January 
I, 1864 and March 17, 1866, Rev. Joannes Jowistowsky oflSciated as pas- 
tor ; he was succeeded by Rev. Joannes Soemer. During that period 
another lot was bought. From September 29, 1867, to March i, 1873, 
Rev. Nicolaus Sorg officiated in the church. During his ministry the 
church edifice was much enlarged and a steeple erected at a cost of $20,- 
000 ; and in 1870 a chime of four bells was put in, with a tower clock. Two 
new benevolent associations were also founded and a house and lot secured 
for a teacher's residence. The school is under the charge of the Sisters 
of St. Joseph and is largely attended. March i, 1873, Rev. Mr. Soi^ was 

German Churches. 165 

recalled by his bishop and was succeeded by Rev. Heinrich FeldmanUi 
who was followed by the present pastor, Rev. Chrysostomus Wagner, 
December 11, 1880. In 1873 ^ handsome parsonage was built at a cost 
of |6,ooo. In 1875 the interior of the church was frescoed and the follow- 
ing two years an addition was built to the school house and a beautiful 
high altar put in the church, to which two side altars were added in 1878. 
This church is now one of the finest in Buffalo and is valued, with its prop- 
erty, at $60,000. 

A school was organized soon after the construction of the church 
and now has between four and five hundred scholars, with six teach- 
ers. . Francis Joseph Schmidt is the principal. 

St. Francis Xakfier Chu,rch. — This church .was founded in 1849 by ^^ 
following named gentlemen : Franz Hall, Franz Wamhoff, Henry Niehaus, 
Henry Rahe, Joseph Spiedl, John Arg^s, Ignatz Fomess, Henry Sander, 
Ernest Sander, Simon Burkhardt, John Burkhardt, John Bauer, John Han- 
bach, Jos. Danscher, Jos. Hall and Qerhard Niehaus. The first service 
was held on the 2d of December, 1849, ^^ ^ little frame church on Amherst 
street, where the present edifi^ce stands, by Rev. Franz Guth. In 1852, 
the congregation had grown so that it was necessary to a larger 
church, and a brick building was erected. An addition was made to 
this building within a few years. In 1866, the Irish members of the con- 
gregation withdrew from the church and formed the St. John Baptist 
church; but the St. Francis Xavier congregation grew rapidly. The 
following Reverend Fathers have been stationed at this church in the 
order they are named — Revs. Franz Guth, Aloys Samogyi, Fr. N. Lester, 
Dominique Geymer, Anton Saeger, Aloys Hatala, John Ignatz Yawis- 
towsky, J. A. Mosball, P. Foertch, S. J., P. Haering, S. J., P. Martens, 
O. S. M., Henry Feldmann, followed by the present pastor, Rev. F. 
X. Kofler, under whose direction the congregation grew rapidly. In 
1877, a further enlargement of the church was made; the old spire and 
the front wall were taken down, twenty feet were added to the building 
and a tower one hundred and twenty-nine feet high erected. Three bells 
of 1,800, 1,400 and 1,000 pounds respectively, tuned F, G and A, were 
placed in the tower, and a clock that strikes the quarter hours added. 
The church was also frescoed, the gas laid and the organ enlarged. A 
school was originally kept in the little frame church on week days, twenty- 
five or thirty scholars attending. This number increased so rapidly that 
in 1 87 1, the Sisters of St. Joseph established a school-house and placed 
three Sisters in it as permanent teachers. A lay teacher (the church 
organist) was also kept. In 1874, another Sister was engaged as teacher. 
The pupils of the parish school now number nearly 35a 

St. Michael* s Raman Catholic Church. — The congregation of St 
Michael's was organized early in June, 1851. About nineteen families 
were then represented in the first religious meeting, which was held in 

i66 History of Buffalo. 

the basement of St. Peter's French Roman Catholic church, on the cor- 
ner of Clinton and Washington streets, June 15, 1851. The first pastor 
of this congregation was Rev. T. L. Caveng, S. J., who served from 
June, i8si» to January 27, 1862, when he died. His successor. Rev. F. 
John Blettner, S. J., remained with the congregation but a few months, 
and was succeeded July 20, 1862, by Rev. F. Vetter, S. J., who filled the 
office until August iSt 1863. He was then followed by Rev. F. Joseph 
Durthaller, who left July 26, 1870, and was succeeded by the late Rev. 
F. E. Reiter, S. J., vfho remained with the congregation until March i, 
1 87 1. Rev. F. William Becker, S. J., was the next pastor; he filled the 
office until February 5, 1875, when the present pastor. Rev. Joseph 
Kreusch, S. J., assumed the office. The comer stone of the first church, 
a brick structure, was laid August 20^ 185 1, and the edifice was dedicated 
January i, 1852, by the Rt. Rev. Bishop Timon. The new St. Michael's 
church, an imposing stone edifice, on Washington between Chippewa 
and Tupper streets, was dedicated June 16, 1867, by the Rt. Rev. Bishop 
Lynch. It is a beautiful church, and is noted for its fine paintings. Its 
spires are not yet finished ; they are being erected at a cost of nearly 
$20,000, and will be completed within the ensuing year. A parochial 
school is attached to the church, with over six hundred pupils, all 01 
whom also attend the Sunday School ; the pastor of the church is super- 
intendent of the school. 

St. Anne^s Ratnan Catholic Church. — This church was organized 
June 28, 1858. For about a month after its organization it was served 
from St. Michael's church. July 28th, Father J. Vetter assumed the 
charge and remained until i860, when he was succeeded by Father 
George Fritsch, from i860 to 1867. From that time until July 26, 1870, 
Father A. Suter served the church ; he remained only until August 22d 
of the same year, when Father Ignatius Bellwealder came until Septem- 
ber 7, 1 87 1. He was succeeded by Father P. Spicher, until July 9, 1872, 
when Father Bellwealder again occupied the office until September i, 
1875. Following him came Father W. Roether, the present Superior. His 
assistants are Fathers O. Hogenvorst, A. Suter and F. Seuermann. The 
building of the church was begun in April, 1858, and it was dedicated 
June 28, 1858 ; its cost was between $8,000 and $9,000. The school was 
then held in the second story of the church building ; about two years 
later, the school house was built. When the church was established, 
there were about one hundred families connected with it. Now there are 
one thousand two hundred children in the school, and about the same 
number of families in the parish. The corner stone of the grand struc- 
ture now in process of construction, was laid in 1877. About $80,000 
have already been expended on this building, and it is estimated that it 
will cost $120,000. It is located on Emslie street, comer of Broadway, 
and is two hundred and twelve feet long, with a front of ninety-three 

German Churches. 167 

feet on Broadway. The main spire is on the corner of the two streets 
named, and is two hundred and twenty-eight feet high ; another spire on 
the other corner is one hundred and eighty feet high; the building 
material used is Lockport limestone. The church will be finished in 
about two years. This church society has enjoyed continual growth and 
prosperity, and the costly and beautiful structure now being erected is 
entirely free from debt ; as the building progresses, everything is paid 
for, and the people contribute liberally for the work. 

• Church of the Seven Dolors. — This society was established in the year 
1871, Father Gundelach being the first pastor. The present house of 
worship was built during the first year after the organization of the 
society. After Father Gundelach, came successively Fathers Th. 
Voss, Gr. Wagner, and then the present pastor, Father A. Heiter. 
There are now three hundred families in the parish ; the church is located 
on Genesee street, near Fillmore Avenue. 

St, Vincent's Church, — This church is located at Cold Spring, and was 
organized in 1864, by about forty families. The first pastor was Rev. 
J. Sorg, who began his work on the 19th of July, 1864, attending the 
church from St. Joseph's Cathedral. The succeeding residing pastors 
were Rev. Hopschneider, Rev. Keck, Rev. Dalez, Rev. Scheffels, and 
then the present pastor, Rev. M. Philipps. The number of families at 
present in the congregation is one hundred and twenty. The parochial 
school is taught by the Sisters of St. Joseph, and contains eighty-two 

St. Nicholas' Church, — This church is located on Glenwood avenue, 
near Jefferson street, and was organized in 1874, with about fifty mem- 
bers. The first pastor was Rev. V. Velten, who began his work on 
Easter Sunday, 1874. The succeeding pastors were Rev. Voss and Rev, 
Philipps, who attends it from St. Vincent's church. The number of 
families now in the church is about one hundred and three. The paro- 
chial school is attended by ninety children. 

St, Marys Church — This church is located at the corner of Broad- 
way and Pine streets. The congregation was organized in 1842, 
by Rev. Joseph Alig. In 1844 a frame church was erected. Four years 
later, April 9, 1848, the corner stone of the present edifice was laid. In 
1856 the school for boys and girls was built on Broadway ; in 1869 a large 
school house was bu'lt on Pine street, and in 1874 another was erected on 
Broadway ; these schools are all numerously attended. The first Supe- 
rior, who came in 1844, was Rev. Benedict Bayer. His successors and 
the dates of their coming are as follows : — 1848, Rev. Carl Cannemueller ; 
1849, J^^v- Joseph Helmpraecht ; 1855, Rev. Anthony Urbanzeck; 1856, 
Rev. Aloys Schaefler; 1857, Rev. Joseph Claus ; 1858, Rev. Henry 
Giesen ; 1859, R^v. Anthony Schmidt; 1861, Rev. Robert Kleineidam; 
1862, Rev. Louis Claessens; 1863, Rev. Adrian VandeBraak; 1868, 


i68 History of Buffalo. 

Rev. John Hespelein; 1871, Rev. E. F. Schauer; 1877, Rev. George 

Church of the Sacred Hearty — This church was organized in 
1875, in which year the building was erected ; the corner stone wjais 
laid in May. It is located on Seneca street, near Emslie. The church 
and the grounds cost $31,000. The original membership comprised 
about thirty families. The first pastor was the Rev. Chrysostomus Wag- 
ner, who assumed the office by order of Bishop Ryan, for about five 
months ; he was siicceeded by Father Theodore Voss, who remained a 
year and nine months, when Father Matthias Gessner came and still 
remains with the church. The parochial school connected with the 
church was instituted in June, 1875, with about twenty-five children ; 
the first lay trustees were L. Holzbom and M. Duchman. The school 
is conducted by the Sisters of St. Francis, and now contains nearly three 
hundred children. The church congregation now comprises three hun- 
dred families. The present lay trustees are Bernard Schmitt and Paul 

The German Protestant churches are divided among the Evangeli- 
cal Lutheran and Old Lutheran, Baptist and Methodist denominations, 
and the churches of the Evangelical Association. There are no Presby- 
terian or Episcopalian German churches in Buffalo. 

German Evangelical Lutheran St. Johris Church. — We have already 
referred to the first German protestant services held in the city ; as an 
outcome of those services, the first German protestant congregation was 
organized on the loth day of February, 1832. The vestry consisted of 
Ludwig Bronner, Sr., George Schneider, Philip Beyer, Sr., Samuel Krie- 
gelstein, Michael Ruch and Michael Goetz. The first trustees were 
Jacob Siebold, Rudolph Baer, Ernst G. Grey, Christian Bronner, 
Christian Lapp and Fred. Dellenbaugh. On the 9th day of September, 
1835, the corner stone of their church on Hickory street, between Broad- 
way and William streets was laid, and on the 25th of May, 1840, the 
finished church was dedicated. It was a substantial brick building, 
48 by 80 feet and cost $10,000, In 1874 the congregation numbered 
about one thousand and three hundred, and a new building 65 by 
116 feet, brick, in gothic style was begun. The corner stone was 
laid September 20, 1874, and the church dedicated September J, 
187s ; ^^ structure cost $42,000. This church is known as the Ger- 
man Evangelical Lutheran St. John's church. The first pastor was 
the Rev. F. D. Guenther, who filled the office until January, 1857. 
In May of that year, the present pastor, Rev. Christian Voltz assumed 
the duties of the office. The society owns a school house, supports its 
own parochial school, and has a Sunday school that is very prosperous. 
It also owns a cemetery of eleven acres on Pine Hill, and the Lutheran 
Orphan Asylum, which was founded March 6, 1864; the asylum was 

German Churches. 169 

dedicated May 9^ 1865, and incorporated April 14, 1865. A separate 
asylum for orphan boys was built at Sulphur Springs and dedicated 
October 11, 1868 ; the building was destroyed by fire February 23, 1876, 
but was at once rebuilt ; the comer stone of the second building was 
laid July 16, 1876, and it was dedicated August 15, 1877. The first Board 
of Managers were. Rev Christian Voltz, Jacob H. Koons, George Kray, 
Andreas Grass, Daniel Lang, Anton Hasselbach, Jacob Reiman, Carl 
Sauer, Frederick Wuest. The present Board consists of William Hen- 
rich, Michael Ulrich, John Machemer, Jacob Benzing, Anton DegenfeU 
der, Louis Seligman. 

United Evangelical St. PauTs Church. — Early in the year 1843, a 
number of the congregation of St John's (St Johannes) church, who 
were dissatisfied with its exclusively Lutheran character, separated from 
that church and organized on the i6th of July, the United Evangelical 
St Paul's church. A lot was bought on Washington, between Genesee 
and Chippewa streets, and the erection of a church commenced. At the 
first meeting of the new organization, held August 7, 1843, Dr. F. 
Dellenbaugh presiding, Messrs. D. Devening, J. Krettner, L Weber, J. 
Hellriegel and J. Bodemer were elected trustees. The first pastor was 
Rev. Mr. Von Linge, who was succeeded in 1844 by Rev. C. F. Sol- 
dan, who filled the office nine years. In August, 1854, Rev. Otto 
Burger became the pastor, where for over seventeen years, he 
labored most effectively and satisfactorily for the good of the society. 
In 1873 he was compelled to seek restoration of his impaired health, for 
which purpose he made a visit to Europe. During his absence Rev. 
Schomstein, who was acting as Mr. Burger's substitute, with a portion 
of the^ congregation, took steps towards separation from St. Paul's and 
the formation of St. Marcus church ; this movement brought Rev. Mr. 
Burger hoipe, and he again assumed his duties, but his failing health 
compelled him to resign his pastorate early in 1874. Rev. C. L. Schild 
succeeded to the office and still retains it. The first steps towards build- 
ing a new church, were taken in May, 1861. Two lots were bought on 
the west side of EUicott street, between Tupper and Goodell streets, for 
about $10,000, and ground was broken in October. The comer stone 
was laid in the following April, and on the 29th of April, 1883, the dedi- 
cation took place. The cost of the church and ground was about $62,000. 
This church is a very prosperous one and is one of the largest in the 
city. The present trustees are Philip Houck, John Greiner, Fr. 
Persch, Jacob F. Schoellkopf and P. Lindenbach. Henry Hellriegel is 

Evangelical St Stephen* s Church. — From St. Paul's church sprang 
in March, 1853, the St Stephen's church. It began with twenty- 
one families, but now has about eight hundred. Its first pastor was Rev. 
Karl F. Soldan ; he was succeeded in August, 1854, by Rev. F. Schelle, 

I70 History of Buffalo. 

who is the present incumbent. In 1857 a church was built on the cor- 
ner of Peckham and Adams streets ; an addition was made to the 
structure in 1875, leaving it as it now stands, with sixty feet front by one 
hundred and sixteen and one-half feet deep, with a seating capacity of 
one thousand and four hundred; its cost was about $25,000. Three 
chimes, cast by Kimberly & Meneele, of Troy, N. Y., were put in the 
tower in 1875, at a cost of $2,600, and a clock costing $600, built by 
Rufus L. Howard & Co. Four benevolent societies are connected with 
the church, and an Evangelican home for Buffalo and vicipity, for aged 
and indigent persons. This is situated at the junction of- Batavia and 
Genesee streets; the building cost $10,000, which is all paid. It was 
dedicated June 16, 1876. There are at present twenty-one inmates in. the 
institution. Forty-two and one half acres are attached to it. An addition 
of a three-story brick building with an observatory, at an estimated cost of 
over $9,000, Henry Schaefer, builder, is now in process of construction. 
The corner stone was laid in the latter part of August, 1883. The pres- 
ent trustees are, Rev. F. Schelle, president ; John H. Peters, secretary ; 
Philip Debus, treasurer; Henry Schaefer and John N. Smith. The 
trustees of the church are : Louis Fritz, president ; William Sinsel, 
secretary; Peter Pfeil, treasurer; Charles A. Fritzsche, Henry Diet- 
schler and Henry Roos. The elders are Philip Zoeller, Martin Fritz, 
Henry Peters, Jacob Knehr and Matthew Koch. A parochial school of 
brick construction, expenses paid by the church, is connected with the 
church, with over three hundred and fifty pupils in attendance ; the prin- 
cipal is Jacob Eitelman, who is also organist and conductor of the choir. 
The Sunday school has between five hundred and six hundred scholars. 
Rev. Mr. Schelle, who is also superintendent of the Sunday school, is 
one of the two pastors in Buffalo of the longest standing, having been 
thirty years in this office. 

TAe German United Evangelical St. Peter*s Church. — In the autumn of 
1 83 1, Rev. Joseph Gumbel arrived in Buffalo; he came from Wurtem- 
berg, and immediately began laboring among the few Germans then here, 
as an Evangelical preacher. In the spring of the following year a Ger- 
man family of five persons, also from Wurtemberg, reached Buffalo ; 
they were John Schwartz and his wife, Katherina ; her brother, Konrad 
Seeger ; her step-brother, John George Schiefer, and a nephew of John 
Schwartz, named Gottlieb Weibert. The Rev. Mr. Gumbel, with this 
family, organized the United Evangelical St. Peter's Church, holding 
services for a time in a small frame building on Pearl street, near Niag- 
ara street. The society grew, and in 1835, the "English Methodist 
Society " made their German friends a present of the small frame church 
building, where the Germans had held their services, and it was removed 
to their lot on the eomer of Genesee and Hickory streets. Rev. Mr. 
Gumbel soon after resigned his pastorate and returned to the old country. 

German Churches. 171 

He was succeeded by Rev. Mr. Laoge, and he, in 1838, by Rev. Hoi- 
lacher. Shortly after Rev. William Veil assumed the charge. January 
I2« 1845, ^he faith and articles of the constitution of the society were 
adopted, and the first church counsel elected, consisting of Wilhelm 
Messing, Stephen Weisgerber, John Nebe, trustees ; John Schoenthal, 
Johann Schiefer and Henry Schwartz, elders. On the 2rstof October, 
1848 Rev. G. S. Vogt became the pastor, in which capacity he served 
faithfully for twenty-seven years. The congregation grew rapidly, and 
on the 25th of February, 1850, the old St. Paul's Episcopal church was 
purchased by the society for $600, and transferred to their lot ; in 1852 
this building was enlarged. In December, 1875, R^y- Mr. Vogt resigned 
his pastorate, organized another congregation, and built the St. Jacobus 
church. The present pastor, Rev. E. Jung, was called to the office in 
the spring of 1876. April 18, 1877, the society resolved to erect a new 
church : accordingly the corner stone of the present handsome structure 
was laid July 22d of that year, and the building was dedicated February 
3, 1878. A day school has been connected with this church since early 
in its existence ; it is kept in a brick school house on the rear of the 
church lot. The society is a member of the German Evangelical Synod 
of North America, with headquarters at St. Louis. 

TA^ United Evangelical Protestant St. Mathew's Church. — This con- 
gregation is of the United Evangelical denomination, and belongs to 
the German Evangelical Synod of Nortfi America. The St. Mathew's 
congregation was organized in 1868, and in that and the follow- 
ing year, built a large brick church on Swan street, near its junc- 
tion with Seneca street. The congregation also owns a school house 
and lot, and a cemetery on Clinton street, below Buffalo Creek. The 
first pastor, under whom the congregation was organized and who super- 
intended the building of the church, was Dr. Hugo Kuehne. He 
resigned in 1870, and was succeeded by Rev. Julius Krummel, who died 
in 1872. Rev. Gottfried Berner, who succeeded Rev. Krummel, left the 
congregation and ministry in 1878, in order to devote his time to editing 
a German newspaper. The vacancy was then filled by the present pas- 
tor. Rev. John Bank. The trustees are Frederick Dietrich, William 
Corbach, Edward Becherer, Friedrich Dold, Frederic Henning. The 
congregation at present consists of one hundred members entitled to 
vote, and two hundred and fifty who are simply owners of pews. The 
parochial school numbers from fifty to one hundred pupils, under direc- 
tion of Mr. Emil Bandlitz. The Sunday school numbers from one 
hundred and fifty to two hundred scholars ; Mr. Bandlitz is the super- 
intendent, with twenty teachers and other officers. Early in its existence 
this congregation met with many difficulties, but through the faithful- 
ness and energy of the members, the heavy debt which rested on the 
church has been reduced to $6,000. 

172 History of Buffalo. 

German Evangelical St Lucas Church. — This church is now located on 
the comer of Richmond avenue and Utica street ; it was organized in 
December, 1870, with Rev. C. Zumedden as pastor, and the following 
named trustees : — William Mueller, Peter Hoffman, Philip Folz, Henry 
Thauer and Andrew Vogt. There were twenty-seven members when 
the church was organized. The second pastor was Rev. Jacob Schlegel, 
who accepted the office in April, 1875 ; he was succeeded in April, 1877, 
by Rev. Frederick Roesch, who remained until December, 1877. In 
April, 1878, the present pastor, Rev. George Kottler came, and ii under 
contract until 1886. The present church was built in 1 881, at a cost, 
including the lot, of $9,500 ; the old church stood on the same grounds, 
and was built in 1868 by the Westminster church, for Sunday school 
purposes. The congregation now numbers one hundred and sixty-three, 
and the trustees are : — Peter Hoffman, Andrew Vogt, Fred. Kissinger, 
Louis Brackman and Valentine Funk. 

The Evangelical St. John's Churchy — This church was organized in 
1847, there being twenty original members, some of whom are still in the 
society. Services were first held by the Rev. P. Brumbach ; he came 
once in every three or four weeks from Tonawanda for the purpose, and 
received for his labors an annual salary of $100. Previous to 1850 the 
meetings were held in a public school house. At that time the congrega- 
tion removed to the English Baptist church on Dearborn street, Rev. 
Maier having succeeded the first pastor. He was followed just before 
1852, by Rev. P. Julius Knimmel, who was the first pastor to devote his 
whole time to the church. During his administration a new brick church 
was erected on Amherst street, the comer stone of which was laid 
August 25, 1852 ; the building was finished the following year. The land 
on which the church stands was donated by a Mr. Haist and J. Schmidt. 
The cost of the building was $3,500 ; it was enlarged and improved in 
1874, making its seating capacity eight hundred. Rev. Mr. Bochart suc- 
ceeded Rev. Krummel as pastor. Between 1856 and 1858, Rev. P. 
Kretzschmer occupied the pulpit ; he was followed in December, 1858, 
by the Rev. C. Siebenpfeiffer, who remained three years. He was fol- 
lowed in 1861, by the Rev. E. Runk. In May, 1864, the Rev. P. Julius 
Krummel was recalled to the church, after an absence of eleven years. 
From May, 1870, to May, 1873, Rev. A. Grotrian was the pastor ; his 
successor was Rev. H. Zimmer, who remained until May, 1876, when he 
was succeeded by Rev. P. W. Angelberger. In May, 1878, he was suc- 
ceeded by Rev. A. Zeller, who remained until the spring of 1883. Dur- 
ing the administration of Rev. Krummel, about 1864, a school house was 
erected, in which a flourishing parochial school is now conducted. 

German Evangelical Friedens C4«r<rA.— This church was organized 
January 26, 1880, with Rev. G. Berner, the present pastor, officiating. 
Following are the names of the first trustees, who are still in office : — 

German Churches. 173 

Hermann C. Grasser, president ; J. F. Berner, secretary ; John Menz, 
treasurer ; Charles Huenemiller and Ch. Schroeder. The church stands 
at the foot of Monroe street, on Eagle ; it was dedicated August 29, 1880. 
There are about one hundred and eighty-five families belonging to the 
church, comprising a union of Lutherans and the Reformed denomina- 
tion ; the church started with but forty-five families ; it has a prosperous 
Sunday school and day school, with about one hundred pupils. 

Evangelical Reformed Zion Church, — On the 5th day of September, 
1845, Rev. John Althaus, Adam Minkel, Sr., J. Adam Guth, Sr., John 
Kalle, Adolph Meir, Johann Diehl, Johann Fries, Peter Schulz, Christian 
Hormel, Adam Guth, Jr., Michael Ott, John Riebling, John Wagner, 
Heinrich Kurtz, Jacob Wurster, Heinrich Kuhn and William Gum- 
brecht, met for the purpose of forming a German Evangelical Reformed 
church in Buffalo. The object was promptly carried out and a lot 
bought on the comer of Cherry and Spring streets, at a cost of $210; 
on this lot a frame building 40 by 50 feet was erected. Officers were 
elected on the 7th of October, 1845, who were installed on the 19th, by 
Rev. John Althaus. Their names were : J. Adam Guth, John Kalle, 
Adam 'Minkel, trustees ; Johann Fries, Adam Diehl, elders ; Adam Guth, 
Jr., William Gumbrecht, vestrymen ; J. Adam Guth, W. Gumbrecht, 
clerks. The Rev. Althaus at that time lived in Lockport, whence he 
came every two weeks to preach. He served the congregation until 
about the close of 1846. He was succeeded by Rev. George S. Vogt, 
who remained in the office until late iii the year 1848. On the i4th of 
February, 1849, Frederick William Hesselmann was called; but was 
afterward excluded from the pulpit on account of his dissipation, and 
the congregation was without a pastor until May 5th of the same 
year, when Rev. H. Bielefeld, of New York, was called. On the 20th of 
May the society joined the German Reformed Synod of the Reformed 
Church in the United States. October 27th of that year, the church was 
considerably enlarged, in accordance with a resolution passed at that 
date. Rev. Bielefeld preached his farewell sermon October 23, 1853, and 
on the 27th of November, Rev. Lichtenstein was elected pastor ; he 
served until October 8, 1862, when he resigned, and Rev. J. B. Kniest, 
the present pastor, was elected, entering upon his duties March 18, 1863. 
In 1854, the congregation had so far increased that it was decided to 
build a new church, and a lot was purchased on Lemon street for the 
purpose ; there a handsome church was erected, which was dedicated 
four days after Whitsuntide, in 1856. A parochial school is connected 
with the church, and held in the basement of the building. A lot was 
bought and a parsonage erected in 1866. 

Evangelical Reformed Salem's Church. — This society was organized 
on the 31st of August, 1873, by the following members and their families : 
C. Scholpp, H. A. Altenburg, H. Sprenger, H. Weber, G. Salzman, J. 

174 History of Buffalo. 

Salzman and C. Roessel. February 4th, 1874, they bought the lot on 
Sherman street, between Sycamore and Batavia streets, from the Evan- 
gelical Reformed Zion's Society ; a frame building was on the lot. The 
first church officers were : H. Sprenger, C. Roessel, H. A. Altenburgand 
C. Scholpp. Rev. C. Kuss was elected pastor, and entered upon his 
duties on the ist of April, 1874; the church was consecrated September 
20th, 1874; a parsonage was built on the church premises in 1874. An 
infant school of sixty pupils, and a school for large scholars, with an 
attendance of about one hundred and twenty-five are connected with the 

German United Evangelical Saint Marcus Church. ^T\i\s Society was 
organized August 5, 1873. The first minister was E. Schornstein, who 
was succeeded July 4, 1875, ^7 Dr. G. A. Zimmerman; under his 
administration the beautiful church was built on Oak street, in 1876. 
Dr. Zimmerman resigned in July, 1878, and was succeeded in Septem- 
ber 1878, by Rev. O. H. Kraft, who is the present pastor. A parochial 
school with fifty pupils, is connected with the church. 

First Church of the Evangelical Association of North America. — ^This 
Church was organized in 1837, by Rev. Joseph Harlacher, a preacher 
sent to Buffalo by the East Pennsylvania Conference of the Evangelical 
Association. Its first place of worship was a small frame building on 
Sycamore street near Spruce. In 1839 ^^^ congregation had grown 
encouragingly and the first church building lot was purchased ; it was on 
Mortimer street, and there a plain church was built In 1846 the present 
church lot, corner Spruce and Sycamore streets, was purchased and the 
frame church removed to it ; services were held there till 1854, when 
the building was sold, and in its place a substantial brick building was 
erected. In May, 1879, ^^^^ building was taken down and in its place 
was built the present handsome gothic edifice, at a cost of $i6,ooa The 
vigorous growth of this Society enabled it in 1857 to establish its first 
mission church in Buffalo, which is now the prosperous, independent 
Krettner Street Church of the Evangelical Association, with a handsome 
edifice and parsonage. In 1873 another mission was established, the St. 
Paul's Evangelical Association, on Grape street, which now has a church 
worth $10,000. The pastors of this association are itinerant ; consequently 
the changes have been numerous. The present pastor of the First Church 
is Rev. Adolph Lueocher ; of the Second, Rev. Frederick E. Hehr, and of 
the St. Paul's Church, Rev. Manin Yauch. The trustees of the First 
Church are C. P. Stein, Charles A. Haist, G. F. Hofheins, George 
Sutter and Charles Boiler ; of the Second, Kilian Schmidt, August Hof, 
Michael Kohlert, Leonard Reu and John Wagner; of the St. Paul's, 
Peter Hering, Jacob Werner, John Petrie, William Hehr, and Gottfried 
Eiss. A German and English Sunday School, with about three hundred 
scholars is connected with the church. 

German Churches. 175 

Second Evangelical Association^ (Krettner Street Church^ — The New 
York Conference of the Evangelical Association of North* America held 
an annual session at Lyons, N.Y., on the 23d of April, 1857, during which 
the following resolution was adopted :— 

'' Resolvedy That a mission shall be located in the southeast part of 
Buffalo, N. Y., and be called the Buffalo Mission." 

This was the beginning of the above named church. Rev. Augustus 
Klein was appointed a missionary to build up the church and arrived 
and took the chare:e in May of that year. It was decided to build a 
church at once, and to carry out the purpose, ten members of the First 
Church honorably withdrew and organized the " Second Society of the 
Evangelical Association in the City of Buffalo/' A frame church build- 
ing was erected on the northeast corner of William and Emslie streets, 
and a parsonage was soon after secured in rear of the church. The church 
was dedicated August 8, 1857, by Rev. M. Lauer. While the church 
was located at the place named the following persons successfully minis- 
tered in it: from 1857 *<> '859, Rev, A. Klein; 1859 ^o ^861, S. KroppJ 
1861 to 1862, P. AUes; 1862 to 1864, C. A. Thomas; 1864 to 1866, M. 
Lauer: 1866 to 1868, P. J. Miller; 1868 to 1869, L. Herman; 1869 to 
i87i,D. Fisher; 1871 to 1874, J. Greuzebach. During the latter pastor's 
administration, December 25, 1872, while the forenoon Christmas services 
were in progress, the church caught fire causing much alarm, but the 
loss was comparatively small. The property was then sold tu John 
Eckhardt, and the Krettner Street lot purchased on which was erected 
the following summer, a new brick church, the cost of which, aside from 
the lot, was about $12,000. The new church was dedicated October 12, 
1873, by the the Rev. Rudolph Dubs. In April, 1874, Rev. J. Reuber 
took the charge, remaining until March, 1877, when he was succeeded 
by Rev. M. Pfitzinger. During his administration, in the spring of 1178, 
the parsonage was built on the church lot at a cost of $1,200. Rev. 
Pfitzinger was succeeded by the Rev. G. F. Buesch, and he by the pres- 
ent pastor. Rev. Frederick E. Hehr. A flourishing Sunday school is 
connected with this church, the number of scholars averaging two hund- 
red and fifty; the school has a large library. This society was continued as a 
mission until March, 1879, when at the annual conference,. it was consti- 
tuted a self-sustaining charge. The present trustees are August Hof, 
Michael Kohlert, John Wagner, H. Wind, J. H. Thomas. 

First Evangelical Lutheran Trinity Congregation^ ^^ Unaltered Augsburg 
Confession^' — Lutherans immigrating from Silesia in 1839, organized this 
church. Their pastor, L. F. E. Krause, made vain efforts to unite his 
congregation with that of Rev. Grabau, who arrived in Buffalo with his 
flock. Soon after Rev. Krause left his position in the church, and in Octo- 
ber, 1 841, this self-depending congregation gave a vocation to Rev. E. 
M. Buerger, who after investigating the situation of the congregation^ 

i;6 History of Buffalo. 

gave up his intended journey to Germany, and accepted the pastorate. 
The vocation was dated November 28, 1841, and signed by the follow- 
ing members: — Carl G. Faude, Daniel Keller, Ernst Mayer, Ernst 
Faude, Carl Toy, Ferdinand Langner, Joseph Hanschke. I. Ch. Sie£Fert, 
Christian Graeser, Gottfried Grottke, Ignatz Felzel and Wilhelm Stem. 
Their place of worship at that time was in a hall in the upper story of 
Moses Baker's block, comer of Main and Huron streets. In 1842, the 
congregation bought a lot on the comer of William and Milnor streets, 
where they soon built a brick church ; a part of the building was used 
for a school, in which the Rev. Mr. Buerger taught during the week. 
This church was known by the title above given and was incorpo- 
rated in February, 1844; tmstees: — Ferdinand Langner, Heinrich Phil- 
lippi and I. Th. Cbabot. The congregation became a member of the 
Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Missouri, Ohio and other States, and 
has sent their pastor, teacher and a delegate to the sessions of the Synod 
each year. The congregation worshipped in the church on William 
street until 1867. From that time the parochial school was held there 
until 1873 ! in ^hat year the new two-story school house on Michigan 
street was completed and the William street property sold. Rev. E. M. 
Buerger was succeeded by Rev. A. G. G. Franke, from 185 1 to 1852, in 
which year Rev. C. Diehlmann was elected pastor. In May, 1854, Rev. 
I. H. Pinkepank accepted a vocation as vicar and teacher and succeeded 
Rev. Diehlmann in 1855 ; the latter received a caH from a Lutheran con* 
gregation in Rainham, Canada, in December. Rev. Mr. Pinkepank died 
in November, 1856. In January following, the congregation elected 
Rev. L. Dulitz their pastor; he filled the office until July, 1864. In 
March, 1865, Rev. F. Th. Ruhland accepted the pastorate. In 1867 a 
separation occurred in the old Lutheran Trinity Church, comer of 
Goodell and Maple streets, when quite a number of members, with 
Rev. Chr. Hochstettef , second pastor of the Congregation, united with 
the First Evangelical Lutheran Trinity congregation, and both pastors 
served the united congregation. About this time it was resolved to 
rent the church comer of Tupper and EUicott streets and meet there 
until their own church was completed. During this period both of the 
pastors were called to another field, and Rev. Carl Gross, from Rich- 
mond, Va., accepted the pastorate. July 5, 1868, the new church on 
Michigan street, between Genesee and Sycamore streets, was dedicated. 
In 1873, the new school-house in the rear of the church lot was erected 
and a parsonage built near the church, No. 653 Michigan street. In 
November, 1880, Rev. Carl Gross accepted a call from Fort Wayne» 
Ind., and was succeeded by the present pastor, Rev. Aug. Senue, from 
Ottawa, Ont, in February, 1881. The present Board of Tmstees areas 
follows: — Fred Braeck, president; Henry Keitsch, secretary; Henry 
Fischer, cashier ; Henry G. Wolter, Christopher Wagner, Daniel Voel- 

German Churches. 177 

ker, Henry Poetting. Church Wardens: — Ernest Beyer, Geo. Fritz, 
C. Becker, Fr. Kamprath, Fr. Braeunlich. Teachers, Paul Theo. Buer- 
ger, Geo. W. Frickenscher. 

Lutheran Trinity Church. — ^Among the Old Lutheran clergymen who 
defied the union of the Reformed and Lutheran churches in Prussia by 
King Frederick Willfam^ III, and emigrated to America rather than 
sacrifice their principles, was Rev. J. A. Grabau. He was imprisoned 
for his defiance of the decree, but was afterwards permitted to emigrate, 
which he did, with some of his faithful supporters. This movement 
constituted the Old Lutheran immigration to BufiFaloin 1839, which ^^s 
been before referred to. The party came over in five ships, in the last 
of which was the devout minister. They landed in New York, Septem- 
ber i8th, and reached Buffalo on the 26th, being followed by the Rev. Mr. 
Grabau on the 5th ot October. On that day their first divine service 
was held in a room on Main street. A church lot was soon after bought on 
the comer of Goodell and Maple streets, and there the Lutheran Trinity 
Church was built. On the 2d of December, 1839, ^^e society was incor- 
porated, and June 7, 1840, the new church was consecrated. The elders 
were, Ernst Krieg, Frederick Luetke, Rudolph Krause, Gottfried Schoen- 
feld, Christian Rother, Johann Heuer ; trustees, Christoph Schmelzer, 
Heinrich V. Rohr. A school was connected with the church. In the 
year 1845, I^^v. Grabau, with others holding the same theological views, 
formed the " Synod of Buffalo." He also went to Germany, in com- 
pany with Rev. Mr. Rohr, to solicit assistance for the building of a 
college ; their errand was successful, resulting in the building of the 
German Martin Luther College, which was dedicated November 10, 
1854, and is now a successful educational instftution. On the 2d of 
February, 1879, Rev. Grabau preached his last sermon ; the following 
day he was attacked by a disease that caused his death on the 2d of June 
following. Rev. Martin Burk, who has long been connected with the 
church as a deacon, is the present pastor of this church. A school with 
jtwo teachers and one hundred and fifty pupils is connected with the 

German Evangelical Lutheran St. Andrew* s Church. — In the fall of the 
year 1858, an Old Lutheran branch church was organized, under the 
immediate ministration of Rev. J. A. Grabau. The names of the 
original members of this congregation were, Christian Pohlmann, Jobst 
Kreinheder, Herman Kreinheder, H. Kinnius, H. Bockstedt, C. Bohle, 
Fred. Tepc, Christian Tepe, George Kratzat, Fred. Beck, William Rose, 
John Hauschild, Mr.Woelfeland Mr. Wiesmann. The vestry were, Chris- 
tian Pohlmann, Jobst Kreinheder and Christian Tepe. Services were at 
first held in a dwelling house on Peckham street. In December, 1858, 
the present church premises, corner of Sherman and Peckham streets, 
were donated by S. V. R. Watson, Esq., and the erection of a church 

178 History of Buffalo. 

begun ; it was dedicated July lo, 1859, under direction of Rev. J. A. 
Grabau, Rev. Christian Hochstctter and Rev. Heinrich V. Rohn The 
congregation was a part of the Lutheran Buffalo Synod until 1866. The 
first pastor of the congregation was Rev. W. Grabau, who had been its 
pastor since dedication ; he was succeeded by Rev. O. Wuest After 
his departure the congregation re-called Rev. W. Orabau, who resigned 
because the congregation severed its connection with the BufFalo Synod. 
Rev. P. Brand succeeded Rev. William Grabau as pastor, in July, 1866. 
In 1869 he accepted a vocation to Washington, D. C.,and was succeeded 
by Rev. A. Ch. Grossberger, who was pastor until May, 1883. His suc- 
cessor and present pastor is Rev. John Sieck. A school house was built 
in connection with this church, and dedicated September 3, 1871, which 
now numbers more than two hundred scholars. The present board of 
trustees are, Charles Lichtenberger, E. Thiesfeld, H. W. Kreinheder, Louis 
Waldow, Frank Kinnius, church wardens; Chr. Pohlmann, Friedrick 
Kruger, Albert Kromphardt and Jobst Kreinheder as honorary member. 
The first teacher in September, 1871, was Fred. Hoffmeyer, and the 
present teachers are Joh. O. G. Robert and Henry E. Brauir. A Sun- 
day school was organized July 15, 1883, with two hundred and forty- 
nine children. 

Gertnan {English) Lutheran Church of the Holy Trinity. — This church 
was organized May 5, 1879. under the ministration of Rev. L. H. Gesh- 
wind, who was called here from Pittsburg for the purpose, by the fol- 
lowing named gentlemen : — William Hengerer, Henry Koons, Louis P. 
Reichert, A. J. Kurtz, E. G. Becker, James Schneider, Jacob Dold, Jr., 
Louis P. Adolf, Jr., Louis Bergtold and a few others who did not after- 
wards join the church. Mr. Geshwind began preaching February i, 1879, 
on a salary of $1,000 for the first year, in the same church now occupied by 
the society ; it was built by a French Lutheran congregation, in 1 830, which 
congregation, for a consideration of $3,000, consolidated with the new 
church ; about $1,000 was then spent in repairing the chur'ch. The society 
was self-sustaining from the first,and never received any financial assistance 
whatever from any source outside of the church ; its indebtedness is 
now a very small sum, which will be paid before the close of the pres- 
ent year. There are now about one hundred and forty-five communi- 
cants in the church. It is the only English Lutheran church in BufFalo. 
The present trustees are, William Hengerer, James Schneider and J. C. 

German Baptist Churches. — The First German Baptist society was 
formed in Buffalo by Alexander Von Putkammer, who came to Buffalo 
in 1848, as an agent of the American Tract Society. He began preach- 
ing in a school house on Spruce street, where the commodious First 
German Baptist church now stands. In 1849 ^ society with twenty-four 
members was organized. The founder of the society remained with his 

Gbrman Churches. 179 

congregation until 1853, since which time Revs. A. Transchel, Sieg- 
mund Kuepfer, Fr. Meir« C. Schoemaker, J. C. Griromell and others 
have officiated. During the prosperous administration of the latter pas- 
tor, from 1864 to 1874, the present church and its mission chapel on 
Je£Ferson street were erected. Since 1874 the church has prospered under 
the ministrations of Rev. Conrad Bodenbender. The second Baptist con- 
gregation was organized with about sixty members, in the year 1859, 
under the direction of Rev. Edward Gruetzner. In i860 a frame church 
was erected on Hickory street, between Genesee and Sycamore. Rev. 
Mr. Gruetzner was succeeded in 1862 by Rev. G. A. Schulte, under 
whose ministrations the society prospered for eight years. He was suc- 
ceeded by Revs. R. Otto and J. Senn, the latter serving but two years 
on account of ill health. Rev. H. W. Nagel was then called in 1878, and 
is the present officiating pastor. The Third Baptist society was organ- 
ized March 2, 1875, with ninety-nine members. It holds its services in the 
mission chapel, corner of High and Mulberry streets, and was first under 
the ministration of Rev. G. Fetzer. Since September, 1875, 1^^^- Wm. 
C. Rabe has officiated as pastor, and the congregation is prosperous. 

German Methodist Episcopal Churches. — There are two German Meth- 
odist Episcopal churches in Buffalo, the first of which was founded in 
1846, by JohnSauten In 1847 the first church building was erected on 
the corner of Sycamore and Ash streets. In 187 1, the present church 
and parsonage were built, under the direction of the Rev. F. Rey. About 
the year 1852 the first steps were taken towards the formation of the Sec- 
ond Methodist Society, by Rev. John Swahlen, who, while terving the 
first congregation, preached occasionally at Black Rock. His succes- 
sors were Revs. Charles Hertel, John G. Lutz and George Abele, who 
held services in private houses or school houses. From 1858 to i860. 
Rev. Julius Seidel was pastor; from i860 to 1864 Rev. Louis Wallon, 

Kappale and Jacob Kalb successively filled the office. Rev. F. W. 

Hoppman, who was the next pastor from 1864 to 1867, noting the neces- 
sity for a church building, bought the lot on East street, between Ham- 
ilton and Austin. The erection of a building was begun in the fall of 
1866, and cost with the grounds $3,580. It was finished and dedicated 
on the 18th of August, 1867, and the society was independently organ- 
ized by the founder of German Methodism, Rev. Dr. Nast, from Cincin- 
nati ; a parsonage was built in 1877. '^h^ society owns a cemetery on 
Bird street. The first resident pastor of the Church was Rev. WiUiam 
Schlueter, who filled the office from 1867 to 1870. He was succeeded 
by Rev. Philip Handiges, who remained until the spring of 1873. Rev. 
J. Woerz followed and remained until the spring of 1876, and was suc- 
ceeded by Rev. John Flad. From 1878 to 1880, Rev. Phillip Stahl was 
the pastor, when the Rev. F. W. Hoppman came, and is the pastor at 
present The total membership of the church is 87. 

i8o History of Buffalo. 

Several of the Churches in the above list have established benevo- 
lent societies for the benefit of either men, women or children, through 
which much good has been acomplished. 



Commercial ImporUnce of Baffalo — Firat American Vessel on Lake Erie — Other Eariy Veaids — 
Porter, Barton & Co. 's Fleet in 1806 » Augustas Porter's Reminiscences ^Pkmeer Comman- 
ders and their Vessels — Buffalo as a Port of Entry— Entries at the Pdrt August isth, 181$* 

— Porter, Barton & Cc's Warehouse at Black Rock — Early Transportatioa Firms •« Lake 
Marine of 1816— Enrollment of Vessels in the District of Buffalo Creek in 1817, 1818 and 
1819— Townsend & Coit — Shipping owned in Buffalo in 1818— The First Steamer— Her 
Passage up the River — The Second Steamer —Captain Levi Allen's Reminisoenoet — Cap- 
tain Sam Ward's Trip to New Yoric— Captain Daniel Dobbins -^Captain Fred. S. Miller 
and other Early Commanders — Development of Lake Commerce Incident upon the Con- 
struction of the Canal — First Shipmenu of Wheat — Captain A. Walker^s Memories of the 
Early Commercial Men of Buffalo— Shipbuilding — The First Propeller on the Lake— 

— The Tug Fleet— Transportation Companies- The Lumber Interest— Coal Trade of 
Buffalo— The Live Stock Interest— Canal Commerce. 

IN commercial importance Buffalo ranks as second only to one other 
city in the Empire State. This proud position she has attained by vir- 
tue of her advantages as the key of the great lake and canal system of 
the country and the energy and commercial sagacity of the men who 
have labored in that field. With a safe and commodious harbor, lined 
with the most extensive and improved facilities for elevating, storing and 
transferring grain, chutes and trestles for coal, and with terminal advan- 
tages that are unsurpassed, Buffalo now more than fulfills the expec- 
tations of the hopeful and far-seeing men who pioneered the commerce 
of the port. The vast chain of lakes that form an uninterrupted water- 
way from the inexhaustible and almost boundless territory of the West 
to the Erie canal and through that to the seaboard, has been aptly termed 
" The Mediterranean Sea of America."* Upon their waters floats a com- 
merce which, stupendous as it now is, has only passed its infancy. By far 
the larger portion of this is wafted directly into and through the port of 
Buffalo ; she holds the key of the situation, in a commercial sense. 

*In a paper written by the late Guy H. Salisbury, comparing Buffalo in 1836 and x86a, he 
said : — 

'* This brief retrospect brings ns to the period when the elemenu of growth had given such 
strength to our business position in 1834-35, that anticipation looked eagerly forward to the coming years 
when Buff;ilo should sit at the foot of our own blue Mediterranean like a commercial Constantinople, 
stretching along the Bosphonis of the broad Niagara and holding the keys of a Dardanelles that 
could open and shut the gates of trade for the regions east and west. 

First Vessels on Lake Erie. i8i 

The first vessel that sailed Lake Erie under the American flag, was the 
sloop Detroit^ which was purchased by the government from the British 
Northwest Company in 1796. She was an old craft of about seventy 
tons and was soon after condemned. In the same year a small schooner, 
the Erie Pockety was built in Canada, to run between Fort Erie and 
Fresque Isle. She was lost in 1799, having drifted out of Erie harbor. 
In 1797 the schooner General Wilkeson was built at Detroit; she was 
about eighty tons and was sailed two years By Captain Connelly. In 
1810 she was refitted and her name changed to the Amelia, She was 
purchased by the government in 1812 and belonged to Commodore Per- 
ry's squadron. The Good Intent was built by Captain Wm. Lee in 1799; 
in 1806 she ran upon Point Abino and was lost with her cargo and 
crew. The same year, (1799) the brig Adams and the schooner Tracy 
were built by the government. The Adams was captured, by the Brit- 
ish during the first year of the war of 1812 ; she was retaken at Fort 
Erie, ran upon Squaw Island and burned. The Tracy was sold to 
Porter, Barton & Co. and was afterwards lost on a reef near Fort 
Erie. In the year 1805 the government directed the commanding officer 
at Fort Niagara to construct at that point a vessel large enough to trans- 
port Indian presents from the Fort to Fort Wayne. The vessel was 
built at Black Rock and named the Nancy ; she was about fifty tons. 
The Contractor y a vessel of eighty tons, was built at Black Rock in 1806, 
by Porter, Barton & Co. She was sold to the government in i8i2r. 
The schooner Catharine was built at Black Rock in 1808, by Sheldon 
Thompson & Co. with others. Several small vessels were built all Black 
Rock and other points before the war, the names of many of which have 
been lost. 

In the year 1806 the firm of Porter, Barton & Co., to the members of 
which the reader has already been introduced, owned a few small ves- 
sels on the lake and began the transportation of freight sent on to them 
by their eastern connections, transporting it around the portage at the 
Falls and thence boating it up the river to Black Rock. There a pier 
was built by the firm, and freight was transferred and stored there as 
became necessary, or was sent forward on the lake. This was the first 
regular line of transportation on the great lakes, with headquarters on 
the American side. When the laden vessels could not ascend the river 
against the current with the aid of the wind alone, from ten to twenty 
ox teams were hitched to the prows and they were thus hauled up the 
stream. Of the incipient commerce of those days, the late* Augustus 
Porter left the following reminiscences : — 

"Between the years 1796 and 1800, (I am unable to particularize the 
year,) the schooner General Tracy was built at Detroit, and in August, 

1808, purchased by Porter, Barton & Co., and thoroughly repaired, 
and on her second or third trip, was wrecked on the Fort Erie reef, in 

1809. The brig Adams, a government vessel, was built about the same 

i82 History of Buffalo. 

time as the General Tracy^ and was sailed by Captain Brevoort for a 
number of years. She was built at Detroit. A small vessel called the 
Good Intent was built at Presque Isle, by Captain William Lee and, I 
believe, was partlv and perhaps wholly owned oy Rufus S. Reed. She, I 
think, was built about 1800, and was wrecked near Point Abino, in 180$. 
In 1802 or 1803, the schooner General Wilkeson, of seventy tons, was 
built at Detroit, and in 181 1 was thoroughly repaired ana her name 
changed to the Amelia. One-half of her was purchased of Solomon Sib- 
ley, Dy Porter, Barton & Co., in 181 1. She was sold to the United States 
during the war. In the winter of 1802 and 1803, the schooner Contractor 
was built at Black Rock, by the Company having the Government con- 
tracts for the supply of the military posts, under the superintendence of 
Captain William Lee, by whom she was sailed until 1800, and afterwards 
by Captain James Beard. In i8o3-'o4, a small sloop called the Niagara^ 
01 about thirty tons, was built at Cayuga Creek, on the Niagara river, 
by the Government, but not put in commission. She was purchased by 
Porter, Barton & Co., in 1800, and her name changed to the Nancy ^ and 
sailed by Captain Richard O'Neil. In 1806 the schooner Mary^ of one 
hundrea and five tons, was built at Erie by Thomas Wilson, and pur- 
chased, the one-half by James Rough and George Bueshler, and the 
other half by Porter, Barton & Co., in 1808, and sailed by Captain Rough 
until the war, and then sold to the United States. In 1808, Porter, Bar- 
ton & Co., purchased the schooner Ranger^ of George Wilber, then 
several years old. She was repaired and sailed by Captain Hathaway. 
In 1810 the sloop Erie was built at Black Rock by Porter, Barton & Co., 
and sold to the United States in the time of the war. The schooner 
Salina^ sailed by Captain Daniel Dobbins, and the schooner Eleanor^ 
were built before the war, and sailed the lakes. Messrs. Rufus S. Reed, 
Bixby & Murray, of Erie, and some others whose names I do not recol- 
lect, built and owned vessels on the lakes in those early days. A number 
of vessels on both lakes, owned and armed dunngthe war by the United 
States, were afterwards sold and employed in commerce." 

Bufifalo Cr^ek was made a Port of Entry in the year 1805. The 
foregoing account will give the reader a general conception of the lim- 
ited commerce and shipping of this port previous to the war of 18 12. 
On the i6th of March, 181 1, Black Rock was made a port of entry, and 
from that time until as late as 1815,-16, most of the lake vessels landed 
there ; at that period they were all sloops, schooners and open boats. 

One of the principal commodities sent up the lakes at that time was 
salt, with small quantities oi dry goods, groceries, furniture, clothing, 
etc. Many of the vessels sailed down the lakes in ballast ; those so for- 
tunate as to be loaded, carried chiefly furs and fish. During the period 
in consideration, and for a few years later, many of the vessels were com- 
pelled to lay up a month or two in midsummer for want of up-freights. 
During the Week preceding the 15th of August, 181 5, the entries at the 
port were : a boat from Detroit loaded with fish and wool, and a sloop, 
the Commodore Perry y with peltries. The only clearance was the sloop 
Fiddler, of Cuyahoga, with salt and pork. The sloop Hannah was the 
first vessel registered in the Custom House at this port ; it is under date 

Early Forwarders. 183 

of August, 1816, She was owned by Townsend & Coit, the pioneer 
forwarders from Buffalo. 

In the year 1815, Porter, Barton & Co. built a warehouse at Black 
Rock, nearly opposite the present site of the Queen City Mills. Black 
Rock was then the great salt and commercial exchange, where the Pitts- 
burg traders, shippers and boat captains met to talkover the prospedts 
and transact business. In March, 1816, the warehouse built by Porter, 
Barton & Co., was occupied by the forwarding firm of Sill, Thompson 
ft Co., who carried on their business there until March, 1821, and with 
thdr immediate successors, were among the most prominent of the early 
forwarders from the foot of Lake Erie. The firm was composed of 
Nathaniel Sill, Sheldon Thompson, and James L. Barton; the firm was 
connected with Townsend, Bronson ft Co., at Oswego, and with Porter, 
Barton ft Co. The one warehouse which has been referred to, served 
all the purposes of storage for freight going both east and west at that 
period ; while this would not seem to indicate a very enormous traffic, 
yet the firm was designated as *' a monopoly that was not satisfied with 
doing all the commercial business, but tried to control the politics of the 

The firm of Sill, ThQmpson ft Co. engaged as employees in the year 
1817, the now venerable John L. Kimberly and Sheldon Pease, both of 
whom reside ia Buffalo. Mr. Kimberly was largely engaged in the 
shipping interest for many years. Mr. Pease remained in the employ 
of Sill, Thompson ft Co. at Black Rock for five years, when he went to 
Osw^o, remaining there ten years. He then went to Cleveland, and 
returned to Buffalo in 1862. As member of the firm of Griffith, Pease 
ft Ca in 1837-38, Mr. Pease aided in building one of the first regular pas- 
senger steamers on Lake Erie, the QivtUmd. The firm of Pease ft 
Allen was subsequently formed and became prominent in the forwarding 

In 1 8 16, the lake marine had reached the proportions represented by 
the following list: — schooners Dolphin^ Diligence^ Erie^ Pamfret^ Weasel^ 
Widow's SoMf Merry Calvin^ Pi^^fiy^ Paulina^ Mink^ Merchant^ PUot^ 
Rachel^ Michigan^ Niptum^ HircuUs^ Croghan^ Tigir^ Aurora ^ Experimint^ 
Black Snake^ Ranggr^ FiifdUr and Champion ; sloops Venus ^ American 
EagUj. Perseverance^ Nightingale^ and Black River Packet^ besides a few 
open boats. 

Of the above list the following named craft, with a few additional 
vessels, were enrolled and licensed in the district of Buffalo Creek dur- 
ing the years 1817, 1818 and 1819: — 

*Jamei L. Barton't paper read before the Bnilalo Historical Society, March 19, 1866. 
t See biogFaphlcal iketdi in f oUowing pagea. 

1 84 

History of Buffalo. 



No. 2, 
No. I, 
No. 3, 
No. 4, 
No. 5, 

No. I, z8i8 

No. 2, 
No. 4, 
No. 5. 
No. 7, 
No. 8, 
No. 1, 
No. 2, 

Name of VesseL 


Brig Huron* 
Sloop Hannah 
Schooner Aurora 
Schooner Experiment 
Schooner Racbelf 

Brig Union} 

Schooner Experiment 

No. 3. 
No. 4. 



Owners' Name. I Blaster's Name. When and Wlieie Bailu 

Jonathan Sidway 
Samuel Wilkeson 
James Hale 
Robert Eaton 
Jonathan Sidway, 
Elihu Pease 
Thomas Warren 
Hawley Reed 
John Crane 
Gardner Cadr 
Francis Hibberd 
Robert Eaton 
Henry T. Guest . 
.Samuel Wilkeson 
Sheldon Chapin, 
Wm.A. Lyndeand 
John B. Pelk 
Chas. H. Averill 

James Beard 
Oliver Coit 
Seth Tucker 
Orlando Keyes 
Robert Eaton 

James Beard 

Warren Dinglay 
Hawley Rera 
Francis Hibberd 
Gardner Cady 
Francis Hibberd 
Robert Eaton 
Henry T. Guest 

Zephaniah Perkins 

Simeon Fox 
Gea J. Adlcins 

Grmnd River, O.. 1814 
Black Rock, i8i6« 
Huron, O., i8z6 
Black Rock, 18x3 
Sandusky. O., 18x5 

Huron, O., 1814 

Black Rock, 1813 
Two Mile Creek, 1818 
Huron, O., 1817 
Buffalo, 18x7 
Huron, O., 1817 
Erie Dist O., 1815 
Danbury, O., 1817 

Huron, O., 1816 

BUck Rock, 1813 
Sandusky, O., 18x8 

Enrollments of the following named vessels are supposed to have 
been burned : — 



Schooner Michigan 

*' Kingbird 
Steamer Walk-in-the- Water 
Sloop Independence 
** Dolphin 

Sheldon Thompson 

Walter Norton, Wm. Miller and Sheldon Thompson 

H. & E. Thompson 

Israel Loomts and Seth Stanl 


Wm. Walters 

bus B. Stewart and 



A. Williams. 

Total Tonnage, 1,188.54 

In the cargoes of these vessels at that period were to be found shipped 
westward, dry goods, household goods, naval stores, groceries, hardware, 
salt, fish, spirits, mill machinery, medicines, whisky, farm utensils, etc. 
Coming down, were shipped furs, grindstones, fish, cider, household goods, 
building stone, hardware, groceries, pork, etc. From the west furs still 
formed the principal article of commerce. In the summer of 1817 the 
schooner Tigress and the sloop Hannah brought in the most valuable lot 
of furs ever shipped from the west at one time. It comprised five hun- 
dred and ninety-four packages of beaver, otter, muskrat, bear and 
buffalo skins and was estimated to be worth more than $1 50,000. Three 
hundred and twenty-two of these packages were consigned to Hart & 
Lay, and owned by John Jacob Astor ; one hundred packages were con- 
signed to Townsend & Coit for different owners. 

The firm of Townsend & Coit was composed of Chas. Townsend§ and 
George Coit ; they engaged largely in the storage and forwarding busi- 
ness about 1 818 at the foot of Commercial street, where they erected 
commodious warehouses for the purpose. They were the first firm in 
Buffalo in this business, and sent the first cargo from here westward, by 

* Thi Hwm was 6rst a Schooner and was altered to a Hermaphrodite brig in 181$, and was 
again rebuilt at Black Rock in 1816. 

f Surrendered and enrollment and license granted to J. Sidway and R. B. Heacodc, Septem- 
ber 11, 1819. 

% The UmoH^ 96 13-95 tons, built in 1814, was the fifst merchant brig built on the lakes. She 
was subsequently laid up as being too large lor the business. 

I Judge Townsend died September 13, 1847, aged 61 yean. 

First Steamboat. 185 

regular bill of lading. At a little latter date John Scott began the for- 
warding business near the foot of Main street; the firm afterwards 
became Scott & Barker, Jacob Barker being the new member; still 
later the firm was Barker & Holt and Holt & Ensign. Soon after the 
completion of the canal in 1825, Sheldon Thompson & Co., removed 
from Black Rock to Buffalo, and carried on business as the Troy and 
Erie Line, with important connections east and west. 

About the middle of July, 181 7, an open boat called the Troyer^ came 
into this port with the first cargo of breadstuffs from the west ; she was 
partially loaded with flour at Cuyahoga. From that insignificant begin, 
ning has grown our present great commerce in the grain products of 
the west. 

The Buffalo Gazette, of March 17, 1818, gives the following list of 
shipping then owned in Buffalo : — 

Schooner Mich^n of 132 tons burthen. 

Brig Union f 104 " " 

Schooner Erie ^^ ** " 

^\oo^ Hannah 43 •* " 

^c\iOOVitx General Scott 21 " " 

Total, 377 tons. 

In the journal of a western tour kept and published by David 
Thomas, he gave the number of vessels on the upper lakes in 181 8, as 
fifty, with a gross tonnage of 1,867 tons. But two vessels were of more 
than one hundred tons ; many of them of less than twenty. In the same 
journal it is stated that there were then on Cayuga lake about thirty 
vessels, schooners and boats, of from eighteen to fifty tons. In other 
words, that small lake in 181 8 (65 years ago), had floating on its bosom 
half as much vessel tonnage as all the upper lakes. At that date the fifty 
vessels on all the upper lakes footed up less than 2,000 tons. Now nu- 
merous vessels enter Buffalo harbor that carry 3,000 tons and staunch 
enough to circumnavigate the globe. These large vessels make the cost 
of freight transportation for long distances on these lakes the cheapest 
in the world. 

The First Steamboat.— The Niagara Patriot of August 18, 18 18, 
contained the following important announcement : — 

"The new and elegant steamboat, Walk-in-the-Water, will be 
ready for sailing the present week and we learn will take a short 
excursion previous to her regular trip to Detroit." 

This pioneer lake steamer was built by Adam and Noah Brown, of 
New York ; her boilers were made at Black Rock. John C. Calhoun 

f The brig Umcn was built in Ohio and was the first vessel on which the pioneer lake Captain, 
A. Walker, sailed after his arrival in Buffalo, in 1817 ; she was owned by Jonathan Sidway, and it 
is said that it was difficult to get crews for her, on account of a prevailing belief among sailors that 
she was haunted. 


was her first engineen She was fitted with two matts and sails. Her 
first license was dated Ifay 7, 1819. She was commanded first by Cap> 
tain Job Fish, a former North River steamboat captain. The boat was 
nearly lost during a severe gale in her first season, when Captain Fjsh 
proved himself incompetent, and at the request of the passengers and 
crew. Captain John Davis toolc command of the steamer and brought 
her safely into port In consequence he was given her regular command. 
The keel of the WaU^n^he^Wmter was laid in November of the pre- 
vious year, near a little ravine about opposite the head of Squaw Island ; 
she was finished and launched on the 28th of May, 1818, at Black Rock, 
amid the enthusiastic acclamations of the community.* 

It was not until about the middle of August that she was ready to 
sail, when steam power, as represented in the new craft, entered the con- 
test against the current of Niagara River. Humiliating as it must have 
been to the owners and managers of the steamboat, the rapid stream won 
the day. 

Trial after trial was made, the engines were worked to their utmost 
power, but it was all in vain ; the pioneer steamer could not get up the 
rapids unaided, and finally the assistance of Captain Sheldon Thomp- 
son's " horn breeze," as his ox teams were called, was invoked ; the ox 
teams were hitched to the boat and thus assisted, she made her way 
slowly up the swift stream and into the lake. This event occurred on 
the 23d of August, on Sunday ; a short excursion was tendered the dti- 
xens of Black Rock and Buffalo, which was very generally enjoyed. The 
steamer was a success from the first, financially and otherwise ; the fare 
to Detroit was fixed at $i8xx) for cabin and %7joo for steerage passengers. 
She returned from her first trip on the ist day of September, and on 
her next trip she took out one hundred and twenty passengers. The 
Walk^in4ki'Wat0r was, however, destined for a short life; she was 
wrecked off the lighthouse, November i, 1821. Obtain Jedediah Rogers 
was then in command of her, with Captain William Miller as pilot and 
sailing master. Her owners immediately began the construction of 
another steamer, under contracts calling for her completion by May loth 
of the following year. She was built at Buffalo, near the foot of Indiana 
street, under circumstances that have already been detailed, and was 
launched April 13, 1822 ; she was named the Superior. Before the har- 
bor pier was constructed, all vessels anchoring off Buffalo were unloaded 
and loaded from and into scows or lighters; this business was largely 
monopolized by G. W. Fox, with whom arrangements wereKlso made by 
the owners of the Superior^ as well as her predecessor, by which passen- 

•The Ni^vm PtOrUi of June 8, 1818, Mud:» — — 

** On Thwidajr last, acooidii^ to prenout anBogement, was lanncfaed the elegant ■tf^i^b^nt at 

Black Rock, bnOt hy Mr. Brown, of New York, who is one of the proprietors. She left the stocks a 

lew ninvtes before one, and moved In fine style, without aeddenC into her destined element, amid 

the acdamatbas of the nnmerons speetatofs who were hi^y grsdfied with the novdty of the 

Early Steamboats. 187 

gers were transferred in the same manner. The Superior was lost on 
Lake Michig^^in i834-'35. Her machinery was afterward put in to the 
Charles Tawnsend. 

The canal was now under process of construction ; Samuel Wilke- 
son and his co-laborers had constructed the first harbor, as detailed in 
earlier chapters ; general prosperity reigned and the young commerce 
and navigation interests of the port and lakes shared in it. Monday 
morning, August 5, 1822. fifteen vessels were moored off Buffalo ; this 
was noted as cause for congratulation. On July 12th, the following year, 
this number had grown to twenty-nine. January 22, 1825, a local paper 
noted the fact that one steamer, six schooners, one brig, in all forty-two 
different vessels entered and cleared during the previous season. The 
gross number of arrivals and clearances was two hundred and eighty-six. 

A new steamer, called the Pioneer^ started on her first trip to Detroit 
on Wednesday, May 28, 1825. She was built at Black Rock and was 
the first high pressure boat on the lakes. The Pioneer was afterwards 
commanded by Captain Levi Allen, who now lives in Buffalo and enjoys 
the distinction of being the oldest lake captain residing in the city. With 
the possible exception of Captain Harry Whittaker, of Detroit, Captain 
Allen is probably the oldest of the pioneer lake navigators now living.* 
He went on the lakes when he was seventeen years old, with a brother 
in-law, aboard a schooner which the latter had bought from the govern 
ment ; she was named the Commodore Perry ^ and was one of that victo- 
rious commander's fleet. Mr. Allen was aboard of the ill-fated steamer, 
Walk^n^ke-Water, when she was lost in 182 1. He also sailed about two 
years on the second steamer, the Superior; she was afterwards ship-rigged, 
carrying a cloud of sail. In 1834, Captain Allen commanded the Superior; 
that was the last year she sailed. Ten days were then consumed in a 
trip to Detroit 

Captain Allen's memory is clear regarding a time when he could at 
certain seasons of the year easily walk across the month of Buffalo creek, 
scarcely wetting his feet ; the sand-bar which made this possible, would 
be carried out into the lake with each spring .flood, leaving a channel 
four or five feet deep. Several little coasters of thirty or forty tons then 
trafficked along the lake shore and were able to enter the creek at most 
seasons, while all the larger vessels were compelled to anchor outside or 
run down to Black Rock. One of these early coasters was called the 
Salem Packet; she was commanded by Captain Sam. Ward in i8i6-'i7; 

* Mr. Allen's memoiy is a mine of reminiscences of lake navigation in early times. His father 
was HoMen Allen, one of the pioneers of Buffalo. He came here in 1808, when Levi Allen was six 
yean old. Holdea Allen had been a merchant, and brought here the remnants of a small stock of 
goods which he placed in market, in a log house that stood not far from the present No. 750 Main 
street The next spring he bought out Major Frederick Miller, at the Ferry, where he remained 
until he was burned out in 1813. He leased Mrs. St. John's cottage immediately after the fire and 
entertained th^ public as best he could. He afterwards kept a hotel at Black Rock» and died with 
dK^eia in 1832. 

i88 History of Buffalo. 

he was one of the pioneer navigators of the lakes and his arrival at dif- 
ferent points along the coast was eagerly awaited, as he carried provis- 
ions and luxuries not otherwise easily obtainable. In 1824, Captain 
Ward built at Newport, Mich., a small schooner of thirty tons, called the 
St. Clair. He loaded her with skins, furs, potash, and black walnut, and 
started in June, 1826, for New York city, via the recently finished Erie 
canal. He sailed to Buffalo, where he took the spars from his vessel and 
towed her to New York with his own team. There he disposed of his 
cargo to good advantage, partially re-loaded with goods for his Michigan 
store, filled up with salt at Syracuse, and returned home the same way 
he went down. The St. Clair was the first, and for many years the only 
vessel of that character to go through the canal. 

Charles M. Reed, of Erie, was one the foremost men in the steam- 
boat interest for many years. Captain Levi Allen was in his employ and 
connected with him for several years. Mr. Reed owned a line of steam- 
boats in 1835, oiic of which was the Pennsylvania^ which Captain Allen 
commanded. In 1838 Captain Allen and Mr. Reed built the Buffalo^ 
which the Captain commanded for several years. They afterwards built 
the Louisiana^ which was also commanded by Captain Allen. He then 
took command of the Niagara in 1847, ^nd after two years of service on. 
her he retired from the water ; for some years after he was connected 
with the First National Bank of Buffalo and engaged to some extent in 
business, but has now retired from active life. 

Captain Daniel Dobbins was for many years a prominent early lake 
navigator. He commanded the schooner Lady Washington^ as early as 
1800. When war was declared he entered the navy. The first timber cut 
for a new vessel for th^ Lake Erie fleet was under Captain Dobbins' 
direction, at Erie, where he then lived. Owing to the scarcity of ship car- 
penters at that time, he was compelled to employ ordinary carpenters and 
others who were even less skilled in the art. On this account, th6 work 
was finally transferred to Black Rock. Captain Dobbins commanded the 
Ohio in Perry's fleet. Superintendent David P. Dobbins, of the Nint dis- 
trict of the U. S. Life Saving Service (Buffalo), is a son of Captain Dobbins. 

The Clay^ the Niagara, (not the steamer on which Captain Allen 
sailed in 1847,) ^^^ the Daniel Webster were steamboats of light tonnage 
that were built by or for Porter, Barton & Co., Sheldon Thompson & Co., 
or Sill, Thompson & Co., and their connections, as early as 1825. Shel- 
don Thompson, one of the early leading men here in lake shipping inter- 
ests, was Mayor of Buffalo in 1840. He died March 13, 1851, aged sixty- 
six years.* 

About the year 1856, side-wheel steamers reached their climax of 
popularity on the lakes. The railroads had crippled the passenger traffic 
and propellers rapidly took the place of the side-wheel boats. 

* See Uogmphj in tubseqnent pages. 

e^A^^^^^^^ yjLe^--f^T^^» i$L^^%^ 

Prominent Early Lake Navigators. 189 

Captain Frederick S. Miller who now resides in Buffalo at the age 
of seventy-three years, is one of the oldest lake navigators who have 
sailed from this port. He has spent nearly his whole life on the lakes, 
having sailed on his first voyage July 10, 1831, on the schooner Louise 
Jenkins, of which his brother Wells Miller was the Captain. In 1832 
Captain Miller helped to fit out the schooner Austerlitz, the first double- 
top-sail schooner on the lakes, and sailed in her that season. In the fol- 
lowing three seasons he sailed on the schooners Huron, Captain Robert 
Hart ; with Captain Stiles on the schooner Minerva, built by Captain 
Augustus Jones; and on the schooner Merchant. In the fall of 1836 
Captain Miller volunteered with a few others, to take the Milwaukee 
from Buffalo to Detroit with a load of merchandise. The vessel stranded 
near Marblehead. From that time down to i83i, Captain Miller was 
engaged successively as captain of the steamer Robert Fulton ; mate of 
the steamer Thos. Jefferson ; mate of steamer Michigan ; mate of steamer 
Wisconsin ; mate of steamer Buffalo, with Captain Levi Allen for five 
years ; captain of steamer Chautauqua, owned by Oliver Lee, Cameron 
and McKay of Buffalo ; mate of steamer Nile, the Louisiana, with Cap- 
tain Levi Allen, and on the Niagara', then successively captain of steam- 
ers Diamond, the Ohio, the propeller Acme, in Ensign's Buffalo and Chi- 
cago line, the Arctic, of the Lake Superior line, the Cleveland, the Trav- 
eller, the Morning Star, the May Queen, and the Ontonagon. In 1866 he 
commanded the propeller Oneida, for the Western Transportation Com- 
pany, and the next year the steamer Illinois of the Lake Superior line. 
In 1870 Captain Miller entered the employ of the Union Steamboat 
Company, with whom he remained until 1881, when he retired from the 
lakes. Captain Miller is the youngest of ten children of Major Frede- 
rick Miller, who has been frequently mentioned in this work as one of 
the pioneers at Black Rock. Two others of Major Miller's sons, Wm. 
Welk and Charles, were well known lake navigators in early times. 

Among other well known early navigators of the lakes, whose suc- 
cess in their calling rendered them conspicuous, may be mentioned Cap- 
tain Stephen Champlin, who distinguished himself as commander of 
the schooner Scorpion in the battle of Lake Erie, September 10, 18 13 — 
he died in Buffalo, February 20, 1870; Captain David Wilkinson, who 
commanded the Commodore Perry in i836-'37; Captain James Rough; 
Captain Knapp, many years in command of a Revenue Cutter; 
Captain Chelsea Blake, who distinguished himself at the battles of Chip- 
pewa and Lundy's Lane and afterwards commanded some of the finest 
lake steamers. Others were Captains Jacob Imson, Walter Norton, 
Thomas Wilkins, Cliff Belden, Geo. Miles, John White, Wm. T. Pease, 
James M. Averill,* Chas. Burnett, Ned Burke, John Burnham, John 
Stewart, Robert Wagstaff, John Fleeharty, Simeon Fox, Wessel and 

♦ Died October 13, 1873, aged 66 

190 History of Buffalo. 

Harry Whittaker, Joseph Caskie, Levi and Archibald Allen, William 
Dickson, G. Appleby, Morris Tyler, Sam Chase, Augustus Walker, 
John and James Shook, Norman and Alvin Patterson, Charles and Ben. 
Stanard, Charles Coshaway, Fred Miller, James Beard, E. P. Dorr,* 
and others. 

These and doubtless many of their co-laborers, were men whose 
natural ability, strength of character and firmness of purpose placed 
them in the front ranks of those who devoted much of their lives to the 
navigation and commerce of the great lakes during a period when the 
calling was fraught with more danger than it is at the present day. 

With the completion and opening of the canal in 1826, lake naviga- 
tion and commerce of all kinds became still more active ; new steamers 
were built in rapid succession, and the lake fleet of sailing craft was 
largely increased. In the pamphlet published by Mr. Ball, in 1825, to 
which reference has before been made, he says of the shipping interests 
at that time : — 

** The shipping which belongs to this port, amounts to upwards of 
1,050 tons; among which are one steamboat, one hermaphrodite brig, 
eight schooners, one sloop and four transportation boats, which average 
over twenty-five tons each. * * » Besides there are numerous 
other water craft of smaller dimensions. 

'' There are upwards of sixty sail of eood, substantial and safe ves- 
sels owned upon tnis Utke, forty-two of wnich entered this port last sea- 
son ; and there were two hundred and eighty-six arrivals and an equal 
number of clearances." 

In referring to the passenger traffic on the lake, Mr. Ball said : — 

" There is also the steam brie Superior, of three hundred and forty- 
six tons burden, whose accommodations have not been surpassed, making 
a trip to Detroit, a distance of nearly three hundred miles, every eight 
or nme davs ; and it is rare that a day passes during the season without 
the arrival or departure of some of the lake vessels, which generally 
have very good accommodations for passengers, and are well found." 

The Emporium newspaper of June 10, 1826, noted the arrival (prob- 
ably for the previous week) of thirteen schooners and two steamboats in 
Buffalo harbor. October 26, 1830, there were thirty schooners, six 
steamboats, two sloops, thirty canal boats and other craft in the har- 
bor at one time. The canal tolls of that year were $48,923.02, an increase 
over the previous year of nearly one hundred per cent. 

Beginning with the year 1829, the wheat shipped eastward from 
this port for three years was as follows : — 1829, 3,640 bushels ; 1830, 149,- 
219 bushels; 1831, 186,148 bushels. 

The shipments of flour for the same period were : — 1829, 4,335 barrels ; 
1830, 31,810; 1 83 1, 62,968. 

In 1817 there were nineteen merchant vessels on the lake, with gross 
tonnage of nine hundred and eighty-six tons. The following year the 

* This list of names is chiefly from a paper left by Captain E. P. Dorr. Captain Dorr died at 
Aiken, S. C, March 99, 1881. 


History of Buffalo. 

number had increased to twenty-eight vessels, 1,586 tons ; in 1832 there 
were forty-seven vessels, 2,000 tons ; in 1854 the gross tonnage was 132,- 
000 tons; in 1858, 404,301 tons; in 1863, 413,026 tons. 

In the spring of 1827, ^^ ^^ ^^ informed by Mr. James L. Barton, 
in his paper read before the Historical Society in 1866, he left Black 
Rock and came to Buffalo, where he formed a partnership with Samuel 
Wilkeson in the forwarding business.* This partnership lasted but two 
years, after which Mr. Barton carried on the business until the end of 
the year 1835. They had the agency of a large line of boats on the canal 
and vessels on the lake ; " yet so scarce was western freight that it 
was difficult to get a full boat-load, although the boats were then of light 
tonnage.** A few tons were all that could usually be furnished each boat 
to carry to Albany. This the boats would take on and then fill up at 
Rochester, which place, being situated in the heart of the grain growing 
district of New York, furnished much of the down freight for the canal. 

About the period of 1 832-33, the forwarding and commission mer- 
chants of this port and the lines they represented, were as follows : — 

Townsend, Coit & Co. and Thompson & Co., Troy & Erie Line ; Joy 
A Webster, Pilot Line ; Pratt, Taylor & Co., Washington Line ; Richard 
Sears, James L. Barton, Western Line ; Smith & Macy, New York & 
Ohio Line ; Baker & Holt, Merchants' Line ; Norton & Cariisle, Hudson 
& Erie Line ; Augustus Eaton, Clinton Line. 

On the morning of November 19, 1833, Buffalo harbor contained 
seventy vessels of different kinds, which indicates that the lake and canal 
commerce and navigation generally kept pace with the growth of the city.f 

In the year 1835, all of the wheat, corn, and flour received at this 
port was equivalent to 543,815 bushels. From that year to 1842, the 
receipts were as follows : — 


No. Bwrelt. 

No. Butheb. 

No. Bushels. 

No. Bushels. 

No. Bushels. 

No. Bndu 






597. J42 






I 454,530 









* Mr. Bftftoo said of Judfre Wilkeson : — '* The Judge had been among the foremost in the con- 
troversy between Buffalo and Black Rock, and although many hard things had been said about him 
in oar paper (the Black Kock GautU)^ he remembered with unkindly feelings nothing that had occur- 
red in the season of anger and strife. He had a mind of laige grasp, quick perception, indomitable 
energy ; never sparing time or money so long as a possibility existed of accomplishing any great 
object he undertook. He may emphatically be numbered with the leading minds that laid the 
fonndatioo of this city." (See biographical sketch in subsequent pages of this volume.) 

f The City Directory of 1836, says there were then fifty-three American vessels on the upper 
Nearly or quite all of these entered Buffalo harbor. 

Forwarding and Commission Merchants. 193 

Captain A. Walker has left in the Historical Society the following 
list of names of men and firms who were in business on the Buffalo docks 
in i848~''49, among them being most of those who had taken part in 
building up the commerce of the harbor from its infancy : — 

Israel T. Hatch, Joel Thayer, Seymour & Wells, James G. Gibson, 
H. W. Millard & Co., Joseph Dart, Jason Parker, S. W. Howell, Russell 
H. Heywood, J. T. Noye, John R. Evans, Joseph B. Gardner, Evans & 
Dunbar, B. Spencer, Waldo & Mann, J. Myers & Co., Niles & Whalen, 
Abell & Gardner, Ressel & Eldridge, William Andrews, Mack & Hall, 
James D. Sawyer, Holt & Palmer, J. & C. Hitchcock, H. S. Beecher, A. 
W. Johnson, A. Chester, I. H. Bostwick, H. Williams, William B. Har- 
mon, R. Haskill, A. Morrison & Co., F. R. Townsend, George W. Tifft, 
R. Famsworth. Morris Hazard, Monteath & Sherman, William Stimp- 
son, Dean Richmond, W. H. Bement & Co., Hayes & Johnson, William 
Buckley, O. W. Ranney, H. B. Walbridge & Co., Bement & Ruden, 
William A. Brown, Ward & Co., M. S. Hawley, Hamilton Rainey, Will- 
iam Foot, Kent & Carley, Richard P. Wilkins, James Murray, P. Durfee 
& Co., E. Root, Cobb & Co., Isaac S. Smith, Charles Holland, John G. 
Brown & Co., S. Purdy & Co., H. O. Corwin & Co., Coats & Folger, S. 
H. Fish, G. S. Hazard, Joseph E. Follett, A. W. Cutler, George W. 
Allen, Simon Spearman, Henry Daw, Fleeharty & Warren, Robert Allen, 
Allen W. Norton, J. Nottingham, S. Strong, William Chard, S. Brown, 
J. M. Smith, Joseph Plumb, Maxwell & Co., Davidson & Co., Robinson 
& Parsons, P. S. Sternberg & Co., Bemis & Brothers, I. H. Hooker, Joy 
& Chapin, William Howard & Co., D. N. Barney & Co., H. H. Sizer, 
Edwin Thomas, Charles C. Hall, H. M. Kinne.* Many of these names 
will sound familiar to the older residents of Buffalo, and a few of them 
are still in business here. 

This was a period (1848-49) when the commerce of Buffalo was at a 
high tide of prosperity, to which it had rapidly grown during the years 
that had followed the completion of the harbor and its extensions, and 
the Erie canal. Buffalo was then essentially a maritime city. The harbor, 
largely extended during the next few years, was safe if not very commo- 
dious, and it continually presented during the season of navigation a 
scene of life and business activity that promised most encouragingly for 

* Mr. Kinne is still in the shipping and commission business on the Central Wharf. He began 
the commission business in Buffalo in 1840, in company with Dean Richmond, J. M. Peabody «cmt 
James A. Cowing. In 1846, Mr. Kinne built the third elevator erected in Buffalo, and between 
the years 1838 and 1865, alone or in connection with others, built fifty-one different lake vessels ; 
among them was the Wyndham^ the first of the large fore-and-aft schooners on the lakes. Her 
capacity was 10,000 bushels ; the average capacity of lake vessels at that time was about 4,000 bush- 
els, and the launching of the Wyndham, with more than double the ordinary capacity, created quite 
a sensation. Predictions were freely offered that her great size and her enormous spread of canvas 
would certainly cause her destruction. That was only forty- five years 1^0 ; the Wyndkam sailed the 
kkes successfolly, and now it is not a very uncommon thing to see a lake schooner come into Buffalo 
hariior, lad«n with a hundred thonsaad bushels of grain. 













Growth of Lake Commerce. 195 

the future. A paper prepared by Sanford B. Hunt about 1865, says of 
the period in question : — 

** Passenger steamboats were in their glory, numerous lines leav- 
ing daily, crowded with passengers, advertised with wonderful per- 
tinacity by the class of * runners * very remarkable men in their 
way, and adding to the seductions of this persuasive system, the 
charms of music discoursed at all hours from the guards of the steanK 
boats. Elevators were only an experiment then, and a vast number of 
longshoremen were supported by the labor of handling freight by 
inconvenient processes. * *' * Canal boats were small but 
numerous, and the result was a business which advertised itself by its 
own bustle and by the crowd which was constantly maintained in the 
narrow quarters where it was transacted, and through which every stran- 
ger passed on his way East or West." 

Between 1848 and 1857, while the commerce of the port did not 
retrograde, it made less bustle and outside display. The growth of the 
elevator business relieved the wharves of the presence of hundreds of 
laborers ; passenger traffic was largely transferred to the railroads ; har- 
bor extensions spread the shipping interests over more territory. But 
none of these changes were especially u^healthful in character; com- 
mercial interests grew and the business was profitable to those who 
engaged in it, until the panic of 1857, which for a time partially paralyzed 
the general business and commercial prosperity of the port. Tne suc- 
ceeding two or three years were, perhaps, the most discouraging that 
commercial men in Buffalo have ever encountered ; but with the com- 
pletion of the Erie canal enlargement a few years later, backed by all the 
well known commercial advantages enjoyed by Buffalo, her recovery 
from the partial prostration was sure and rapid, and its growth in this 
respect has been steady and healthful down to the present time. 

In a recent interview, Washington BuUard, manager of the Union 
Steamboat Co., a man of thirty years* active experience in commerce 
and lake navigation, said of the commercial prospects of Buffalo: — 

*' The commerce of Buffalo has received new guarantees latelv, 
viz.: — an immense anthracite coal business which is to-day only in its 
infancy, and a future export bituminous coal business which will 
undoubtedly be very large ; its location with reference to the develop- 
ment of a territory imperial in extent and tributary to the west end of 
Lake Superior — a development which has never been equalled in this 
or any other country, the Iruits of which must come to Buffalo, for this 
reason: — this city has been able to do the grain business by lake from 
Chicago, notwithstanding the distance between that point and this by 
lake is nine hundred and fifty miles, while the railroaci distance is only 
five hundred and fifty miles ; the lake has always been able to compete 
with railroads, even with these inequalities of distance. In contrast 
with this, the water route to the west end of Lake Superior and the 
northwest territory before alluded to, is as short as that of any railroad 
(perhaps shorter), now in existence or that can be built ; this fact guar- 
antees that we shall always bring the products of that region to Buffalo. 

196 History of Buffalo. 

Added to this is the Northern Pacific railroad, which will, beyond a 
doubt, bring a large trans-continental business." 

Statistics prepared September i, 1883, by Wm. Thurstone, Secretary 
of the Board of Trade, show remarkable improvement in the commerce 
of the port, over the previous year. He says : — 

" The receipts of grain by lake, including flour reduced to its equiva- 
lent in wheat, aggregate thus far this year, 40,730,900 bushels, while for 
the correspondmg period of last year they were 33,767,760 bushels, 
showing tne gratifying ^ain of 6,963,140 bushels for 1883. The coal 
exports show an excess over 1882 of over 20,000 tons, while the move- 
ment of cement, plaster, salt, and railroad iron are about the same as in 
that year. No returns are made of miscellaneous freights, ot which the 
shipments have been very large. The canal exports thus far this sea- 
son are 24,555,050 bushels of grain; last year they were 16,635,177 bush- 
els, making an increase this year 7,862,871 bushels. Thirty-one more 
boats have cleared up to August 31 than did last year, the figures being 
3,887 for 1882 and 3,918 for 1883. The quantity of coal exported was 
20,306 tons and of flaxseed 5,704 tons. The up-movement has been 
quite satisfactory. Elevating and storage charges have been steady all 
the year at last year's figures. The shipments of grain from the eleva- 
tors by railroad show an increase in favor of 1883 o^ about 700,000 
bushels. August 31, wheat was shipped at 4 1-4 cents and corn at 4 
cents from Chicago to Buffalo. The same day last year the rates were 
only 2 1-4 and 2 cents respectively. Canal freights yesterday hence to 
New York, were 5 3-4 cents on wheat and 5 1-4 on corn, about i 1-4 
cents higher than on the corresponding day last year. Doubtless the 
freeing of the canals from tolls has helped the movement of tonnage to 
and from tide water to a considerable extent.'** 

A United States volunteer life boat station was established in 
Buffalo Harbor in September, 1877, which was made a full station of the 
United States Life Saving Service in the ist of July, 1879. The station 
is under the superintendency of Captain David P. Dobbins, and has 
been very efficient whenever its service has been needed. 

Ship Building. — The preceding pages have necessarily included many 
facts relative to ship buildmg at Buffalo and Black Rock ; to these there 
is little to add. One of the earhest ship builders in this vicinity was 
Captain Asa Stanard, who had a yard as early as 18 10, at Scajaquada 
Creek. At a little later date he removed to Black Rock, where he was 
associated with Benjamin Bidwell, as the firm of Stanard & Bidwell. 
They built the schooner Erie at Black Rock; she was owned by Sheldon 
I'hompson & Co., and Captain William Miller. The Red Jacket was the 
last vessel built by Stanard & Bidwell at Black Rock ; she was owned 
by Sill, Thompson & Co., and was built in 1820. The Peacock was the 

*In ft pftpcr of reminiscences left with the Historical Society by Captain Walker, one of the 
more prominent early lake navigators, he states that in 1856 the schooner />Aiit Richmond Xwik 
wheat to Liverpool from Chicago, making quicker passage than many of the ocean vessels. In 
1859, thirty or more lake vessels loaded with grain for ocean voyages. These facts are given as 
evidence that our •* fresh-water sailors " are capable of excellent ocean service. The Dmom Rich^ 
mcmd was the first lake vessel to load for a foreign port. 

Early Ship Builders. 197 

last steamer built by the firm of Stanard & Bidwell. She was built in 
1828. The firm was afterwards Bidwell & Davidson, and then Bidwell 
& Carrick, who finally established themselves at Buffalo. Mr. Bidwell 
enjoyed the reputation of possessing peculiar genius and ability in 
his profession ; he was the master spirit of the different firms of which 
he was a member. Jacob Banta was one of the most successful ship- 
builders of early days, and was a partner of Mr. Bidwell after the 
removal of the latter to Buffalo. Mr. Banta built the fine steamers 
Western Metropolis and City of Buffalo. 

Captain Frederick N. Jones and his brother were prominent ship- 
builders. The former came to Buffalo in 1845, ^"d established himself 
where the R. Mills & Co., yards are now located ; he built there the pro- 
peller Pocahontas^ the schooner Watts Sherman and other vessels. He 
sold the yard in 1866 and removed to Tonawanda, where he built 
numerous vessels. 

About the year 1832 the building of upper-cabin boats was begun; 
there was a good deal of doubt expressed at first as to their sea-worthi- 
ness; other kinds of vessels were built about that time of greater length 
than formerly. 

The growth of the ship-building interest in Buffalo is indicated by 
the fact that in 1853, for the year ending June 30th, there were built at 
Buffalo, one brig, twelve steamers and nine schooners, with a gross ton- 
nage of 65,184.25. In 1867 this interest had grown to the building of 
three ships or barks, sixty-nine sloops and canal boats, seven brigs and 
fourteen steamers. In 1870 there were built at Buffalo, fourteen pro- 
pellers, one side-wheel steamer, one barge, two sail vessels and twenty, 
six canal boats. 

The first propeller that ever visited Buffalo harbor was the Vandalia, 
which came up from Lake Ontario in the spring of 1842; she was built 
the previous year at Oswego. In December, 1840, Josiah T. Marshall, 
formerly of the firm of Bronson, Marshall & Co., of Oswego, was 
requested by Mr. Sanderson, of Brockville, Canada, to visit New York 
city to inspect the new propeller that had just been completed and pat- 
ented by Captain John Ericson. Mr. Marshall met Captain James 
Van Cleve, one of the most prominent of the older lake captains, and 
asked him to also go and inspect the new craft, which he did. These two 
men reported most favorably of the propeller and an arrangement was 
made between Captain Ericson and Van Cleve, by which the latter 
became half owner of the patent on the propeller as far as it applied to 
the North American lakes, provided he put a propeller afloat on the lakes 
within one year. The result was the building of the Vandalia, When 
the propeller reached Buffalo, the HoUisters, a firm of ship-builders, then 
of Perrysburg, evinced much interest in the new steamer and Captain 
Van Cleve effected a bargain with Robert HoUister, by which he built 

198 History of Buffalo. 

two propellers in 1842-43 — the Hercules and Samson. Sheldon Pease, 
now of Buffalo, was afterwards interested in the building of propellers at 
Cleveland, and their numbers then rapidly multiplied.* It will 
show the rapid change from steamboats to propellers, to state that 
in the year 1847 there were in commission on the lakes sixty-four steam- 
boats and only twenty-one propellers; in 1861, fourteen years later, 
there were seventy-one steamboats and one hundred and eighty-two 

In 1862, E. T. Evans made a contract with David Bell, of Buffalo, 
for the construction of an iron propeller; accordingly, in the early part 
of the year, Mr. Bell laid the keel of the first iron steamer constructed 
west of New York ; she was eight hundred and fifty tons ; the iron 
was rolled at the mills of Messrs. Pratt & Co., and almost the entire 
work was done in Buffalo. She was named the Merchant^ and success- 
fully navigated the lakes for many years. Mr. Bell has always been, and 
now is an ardent advocate of iron vessels for the lakes, and he has built 
many of the finest ones afloat. In 1876 the fleet of iron boats sailing 
from Buffalo harbor had increased to ten; besides the Merchant their 
names were, the Philadelphia, Alaska, India, China, Japan, Cuba, Java, 
Russia, Scotia, Arabia. Others have since been added. 

The ship-building interest at this point is now mainly in the hands of 
David Bell and Samuel Gibson, builders of iron vessels. R. Mills & Co., 
Baker & Sons, Carroll Bros., William Hingston & Son, Riley Bros., Union 
Dry Dock Co., C. L. Dimmers, George H Notter, William Murphy, 
Joseph Supple. 

Tlu Tug Fleet. — In 1851, Sherman Petrie made an effort to get a tug 
built in Buffalo, but was unsuccessful, for the reason that no one had any 
confidence in the success of the craft in a pecuniary sense. A few years 
before that date the Charter was built here for service in towing rafts, 
but she can hardly be classed as a regular tug.f 

About the year 1855, the first regular tug was put afloat in Buffalo 
waters ; she was the Franklin, and was bought in Albany by William 
Farrell. She found plenty of business, and the construction of others 
rapidly followed. Cook Brothers were early tug owners, as was also 

Mr. Curtiss, who built the P. F. Barton, among the first tugs built 

here, and a number of others. The tug fleet of Buffalo harbor now com- 
prises fourteen large boats, which are controlled by Captain George 
Hand, the Independent Tug Line, and Thomas Maytham. There are 
also about twenty small tugs in the port, mostly owned by individuals. 

* Josiah T. Marshall died in Buffalo November 23, 1875, at ihe age of seventy-two yean. 
Robert HoUtster died in Buffalo, September 23, 1877. The Samson and the HertuUs were each 
about four hundred tons burthen. The Samson was burned at Cleyeland, November 29, 1875. 

f Mr. H. M. Kinne volunteers the statement that if the tug service had been introduced here 
before the construction of the Blackwell Canal, about 1846. that portion of the haibor system would 
have been unnecessary, at least at that time, at the tugs could have taken all vessels into the creek. 

Transportation Companies, 199 

Transportation Companies, — The regular transportation companies 
which participate largely in the commerce and passenger travel on the 
lakes, with their headquarters at Buffalo, are : — 

The Union Steamboat Company, which was established and incor- 
porated in 1869. The Lake Navigation Company and the American 
Transportation Company were in existence previous to that time, but 
had disappeared. The Union Steamboat Company is a combination of 
the old Erie Railway Steamboat Company with other interests. Its first 
manager here was S. D. Caldwell, and Jay Gould was the first president. 
The Company is now the owner of all the stock of the Union Dry Dock 
Company, which builds all the vessels of the steamboat company. S. S. 
Guthrie is the present president of the company, and Washington Bull- 
ard is manager. This company has built the following named pro- 
pellers : — 

Jay Gould, B. IV. Blanchardy James Fiske, Jr., Newburgh^ Dean Rich- 
mondy Starucca, Portage , Avon, Nyacky New York, Rochester, H. J. Jewett. 

The gross tonnage of the fleet is twenty-nine thousand tons. The 
company now runs fifteen steamers and two schooners. 

The Lake Superior Transit Company was organized in 1878, and is 
incorporated under the law's of the State of New York. It is a joint 
organization, formed by the Western Transportation Company, the 
Union Steamboat Company and the Anchor Line, for the purpose of 
giving more efficient and stable transportation to the Lake Superior 
region. The company runs ten steamers between Buffalo and Duluth, 
and intermediate points. The boats are the largest on the lakes, and are 
first-class in all respects. The president is John Allen, Jr., and E. T. 
Evans is general manager. 

The Western Transportation Company was incorporated in 1855, 
making it one of the oldest organizations of the kind ; it owns thirteen 
passenger and freight vessels, which run in connection with the New 
York Central & Hudson River railroad. John Allen, Jr., is president 
and manager of the company, and John L. Williams, secretary and 

The Anchor Line has its headquarters at Philadelphia. Its corporate 
name is the Erie & Western Transportation Company. It runs in con- 
nection with the Pennsylvania railroad at Erie, and with the Buffalo, 
New York & Philadelphia railroad at Buffalo. 

The Commercial Line of Steamers runs six propellers, doing almost 
an exclusively freight business. 

The Lumber Interest. 

The lumber interest of Buffalo has grown from a small beginning to 
its present enormous proportions chiefly during the past forty years. 
Down to about the year 1850, the lumber trade here, while sufficient for 


200 History of Buffalo. 

the requirements of the place, had not assumed a degree of importance 
demanding especial attention. At that lime the wholesale trade was con- 
fined to three or four firms. Among them were J. Thistlewort, who was 
located at the foot of Genesee street ; William Hawkins, on the Ohio 
Basin ; J. S. & J. L. Newton, on Court street. In 1852 S. D. Colie and 
J. S. Noyes established themselves in the business here, and both still 
remain in it and are among the heaviest dealers in the city. 

Previous to 1850 the lumber supply was near at hand in Canada 
whence it was shipped across in small schooners, in cargoes of about sixty 
thousand feet; hemlock was brought in then and for many years after 
chiefly from the surrounding country on this side. Between the years 
1855 and i860, as the supply of Canada lumber became gradually reduced 
and the superior excellence of the Michigan pine became better kuown, 
shipments from that region increased, vessels bringing it down the lakes. 
In 1857-58 John S. Noyes, S. D. Colie, John Leighton, Joseph Van- 
Vleck, and, perhaps, others attempted to make a success of rafting 
timber down the lake from Saginaw ; but the enterprise was soon aban- 
doned ; several rafts were lost and those which came through were a 
good deal damaged and their value depreciated. Since that time the 
shipments down the lakes have vastly increased from year to year, and 
cargoes have swelled in proportion with the increasing tonnage of ves- 
sels ; two hundred thousand feet have often been shipped on vessels, 
while the great lumber barges that were introduced about 1862, are loaded 
with as much as six hundred thousand feet. 

About the year 1859, ^^ ^^^ supply of hemlock lumber became some- 
what reduced in this vicinity, the valuable forests of Pennsylvania were 
drawn upon for this market. Mr. Colie claims the credit of having first 
brought hemlock lumber from Pennsylvania by rail ; it came over the 
Erie road. The hemlock from that region is superior in quality and is 
handled here now in immense quantities. 

The supply of black walnut formerly came principally from Ohio and 
Indiana, but the enormous quantity used in recent years has caused a 
scarcity and high prices, resulting in the shipment of much of the pres- 
ent supply from the southern states. The hardwood lumber trade of 
Buffalo is largely in the hands of Taylor & Crats, 269 Elk street, who 
have been in the business since 1864; and Scatcherd & Son, who have 
yards on Ohio Basin, Miami and Louisiana streets, and also on the oppo- 
site comer. 

The wholesale lumber trade of Buffalo is now mainly conducted by 
the following individuals and firms in addition to those already men- 
tioned : — 

E. & B. Holmes, 187 Michigan street; this business was established 
in 1852, when a small planing mill was put in ; it was one of the first in 
Buffalo. In the manufacture of sash, doors, boxes and other wood work, 




The Coal Trade. 201 

and the sale of lumber, this establishment ranks as one of the largest 
in the State. 

C. P. Hazard, established in 1868, has now two yards, one at 92 River 
street and the other at 343 Louisiana street. 

Haines & Co., established in 1861, as E. & G. R. Haines. They were 
then located on West Genesee street; since on Erie street, Nos. 253 and 
255. Alfred Haines became a partner in the business in 1867. 

Cooper & Haines, Ohio Basin and Louisiana street, established about 
1879. ^' ^* Hazard, 9^ River street established in 1864. Benson & Lock, 
Michigan street near Ganson, established 1876. W. W. Tyler, Ganson 
street, near Michigan. Taylor & Betts, 199 Louisiana street. Mixer & 
Co., 60 Main street. Lee, Holland & Co., Court, corner of Wilkeson. 
John Laycock & Son, corner Main and Seneca streets. Hurd & Hauen- 
stein, Elk street, corner of Michigan. W. B. Hazard & Co., Ganson 
street, and 253, 255 Erie street. Frank H. Goodyear, 62 Pearl street. 
Joseph Dart, Chicago street, corner Miami. George M. Cole & Co., 58 
Main street. W. R. Burt, Ganson street Adams, Moulton & Co., 257 
Washington street. David Whitney, Jr., Ganson street and Black- 
well canal. 

Besides these representatives of the wholesale lumber trade, there are 
about forty retailers who distribute the imports to the consumers of 
Buffalo and vicinity. 

The Coal Trade.* 

Previous to the year 1852, the coal trade of Buffalo was confined to 
a few thousand tons of soft coal, which went to supply the foundries and 
shops of the place ; only sixty thousand tons of this kind of fuel were 
brought here in 1852. From this insignificant import the receipts of coal 
in 1868 advanced to 299,914 tons, while now the total receipts over-run 
3,000,000 tons. It was about the year i860 or 1861, that anthracite coal 
was brought to this city in any considerable quantity ; it is believed to 
have been first brought here by Jason Parker & Co., who were then 
located on Norton street During the season of 1861, it was found diffi- 
cult to dispose of 25,000 tons in the city. In that year, what was known 
as the Anthracite Coal Association, was formed, its object being mainly 
to market coal here at less expense to the producing interest and on a 
regular basis of prices. It was formed by the Delaware, Lackawanna & 
Western Co., J. Langdon and the Pittston & Elmira Coal Co. The lat- 
ter company went out of existence, when the other two continued -the 
Association until about 1870, when the Delaware & Hudson Canal Co., 
was made a member of the organization. In 1879 ^^^ Delaware, Lacka- 
wanna & Western withdrew, and the association continued as thus left 

* Much of this able reriew of the Buffalo coal interest is taken from an exhaustive article which 
was printed in the Buffalo E^^nss^ in August, 1883. 

202 History of Buffalo. 

until May, 1883. J- Langdon, referred to above, was in the coal business 
here as early as 1858 ; he is now succeeded by the firm of J. Langdon & 
Co., which is composed of J. Langdon, J. D. F. Slee and C M. 

As manufacturing increased in Buffalo, and the city grew, a lack of 
transportation facilities from the coal regions was seriously felt ; this was 
especially the case during the five years succeeding i860. The great 
bulk of the hard coal then brought to Buffalo, came over the Central 
railroad ; but as the demand increased, other lines were opened, giving 
more direct communication with the coal districts. The Erie (then called 
the Buffalo, New York & Erie,) then brought the coal of the Pittston & 
Elmira Coal Co., to the city. In 1865 the Buffalo, New York & Phila. 
delphia railroad was chartered and opened in 1873. It has largely trans- 
ported soft coal to this market since that time. Coal was first handled 
by chuets in this city, in 1^70, by Langdon & Co. Their trestle was on 
the Erie Basin, foot oi Genesee street. 

Regarding the present extent of the consumption of anthracite coal 
in this city, it .has been estimated that 285,000 tons were used here in 
1882. Add to this 1,000,000 tons shipped by lake and take this sum from 
i»933>ooo tons estimated as last year's hard coal receipts and it will give 
the rail shipments from Buffalo at 648,000 tons, which is probably much 
below the fact. The receipts of soft coal of all grades is given at 1,100,- 
000 tons taking round numbers. A shipper estimates that i,ooo,ocx> 
tons of soft coal passes through Buffalo annually without breaking bulk. 
This leaves but 100,000 tons for city consumption, while at least 400,000 
tons are annually used. Putting the soft and hard coal aggregates 
together and dropping off quite a large fraction for the sake of round 
numbers the sum is 3,000,000 tons for last year. 

Following is given a list of the leading local coal shippers, compiled 
as carefully as possible. The effort has been made to mention wholesale 
dealers who are more or less directly interested in the mines. Just where 
to stop is hard to tell, but the list given below is thought to fairly rep- 
resent the coal trade of Buffalo, and a noble list it is. Upwards of 4,000,- 
000 tons of hard coal, it is figured, will be handled in Buffalo this year, 
and over 1,500,000 tons of soft coal. This is an enormous increase 
over last year as figured above, which is considered low. 

It is claimed, and with apparent reason, that the pioneer of the hard 
coal trade in the West was Jervis Langdon, who founded the house «till 
bearing his name) in 1858. He died fifteen years ago, but lived to se6 the 
trade grown from nothing to an already large factor in business. The 
coal handled by the company is called Shamokin coal, which indicates a 
district of the anthracite belt. The product of half a dozen collieries in 
this district is handled by the company, part of which it owns. Of the 
coal brought to Buffalo and the Niagara bridges, J, Langdon & Co. ban 

The Coal Trade. 203 

die about 200,000 tons yearly. The firm's Buffalo shipping wharves are 
situated at the foot of Genesee Street, and the company also lease 
wharves on the East side. No changes have been made in the company 
for some time except the reception of Mr. C. M. Underhill, formerly 
shipping agent into full membership. 

The Butler Colliery Company at first a fixture in Corning and later 
in Elmira where the office is still kept, has, through an agent, done busi- 
ness in Buffalo since the first opening of its mines. Of these, five are 
located at Pittston and one at Carbondale. The annual capacity of these 
mines is about 1,000,000 tons of anthracite coal. They are only worked 
to half their capacity. This coal comes to Buffalo for re-shipment by 
lake, over the Erie road, and is handled over that company's extensive 
trestle on Buffalo Creek. The city agent is Mr. E. S. Hubbell. About 
100,000 tons are handled here annually, though a much larger amount is 
promised soon. As is the case with other hard coal companies, points 
best reached by lake are supplied by that route and others by rail. The 
company has been in existence about twenty years. 

The advent of the Lackawanna Coal Company to Buffalo dates 
back to 1 861, when an office and a small yard were opened at the foot of 
Genesee Street. These are still in use by the company though long 
become too small to meet the wants of the trade. In 1868 the nucleus 
of the present plant at the foot of Erie street was bought as a sort of 
blind venture, and was not brought into use until 1876, when the present 
trestle and office were put up. The first coal was shipped from that 
point in 1880. Westward shipments were begun in 1861 by canal, 
though for the past three or four years the coal has come largely by 
the Central Railroad. With the completion of the company's road 
last winter it began bringing its own coal. The trestle fronting on 
the creek has thirty-nine pockets with a capacity of 4,000 tons. The 
coal comes from Scranton, where the company own a large num- 
ber of collieries, mining nearly 5,000,000 tons yearly. About 1,500,000 
tons of this comes to Buffalo. Besides the large lake trade much is 
sent West by rail and a large wholesale and retail business is done in 
the city. 

The Lehigh Valley Company, which, with a railroad of its own at 
its back and ample trestles for shipment by lake, has been able to take a 
leading part in lake shipments, especially since the establishment of its 
line of steamers, which now numbers six steam barges of large size. For 
some time the company had no direct position in Buffalo, but sold its coal 
to Mr. E. L. Hedstrom. About five years ago, however, an agency was 
established under Mr. Peter C. Doyle, which remains unchanged. The 
old trestle, which stood fronting the creek near the Ohio Basin, was 
last year abandoned and a new one built opposite on the BlackwelL 
This new trestle has sixty-four pockets, capable of holding 5,000 tons 

204 History of Buffalo. 

and having a frontage of seven hundred and fifty feet on the canal. 
There is no stocking room here, but on the TifiFt farm, where extensive 
canals are being dug by the company, a large area for storage is 
reserved. The company has mines both in the Wilkes-Barrc and Lehigh 
districts, with an annual out-put of above 1,200,000 tons. The western 
trade is large. No retail business is done in Buffalo. The Lehigh runs 
its own trains into the city over the Erie tracks from Waverly and 
brings here this year about 1,000,000 tons. 

The firm generally known as Moser, Hoole & Co., was formed in 1878. 
Mr. Hoole had formerly been in the same business in connection with E. 
L. Hedstrom. Since the death of Mr. Moser in April, 1883, the firm 
name has been A. J. Hooie & Co., though the older name is more often 
seen. The lirm does only a wholesale business, handling its coal over 
the Erie wharves and shipping by the Erie railroad. The coal handled 
by the firm is of the Pittston variety of anthracite, and comes from their 
own mine, known as the Eagle shaft. Upwards of 100,000 tons were 
handled last year. 

The Pennsylvania CoaI Company came to Bu&lo in March, 1876, 
and established an office at No. 10 Ohio street. The general western 
superintendent is Thomas Hodgson, whose headquarters are at Buffalo. 
The company has about seven hundred feet frontage on the BlackwcH canal 
and three hundred and twenty feet not yet in use. Shipping is made easy 
and rapid by a trestle containing twenty-five pockets holding one hundred 
tons each. The Pennsylvania Company^s coal is anthracite, coming from 
Pittston and vicinity, where it has sixteen collieries. These produce, 
when working full time, at least six thousand tons a day of which from one 
thousand to one thousand five hundred tons are just now sent to Buffalo 
and the West daily, mostly by rail. It is estimated that they bring 
here annually upwards of three hundred thousand tons. The coal is 
brought to Buffalo by the Erie road, where it is distributed westward. 

The Delaware & Hudson Canal Company has done business in hard 
coal here since 1865, beginning with a general wholesale and retail traf- 
fic, but confining its efforts to wholesale alone since March last. The 
company owns thirty-four mines in the Wyoming Valley of Pennsyl- 
vania. The coal is brought westward by the Erie. The company has 
regular agencies both in Buffalo and Cleveland. The business here is 
in charge of Mr. J. E. Mc Williams, under the official title of "Western 
sales and shipping agent." The company has wharves and trestles on 
the Buffalo creek. The company brings to Buffalo about three hundred 
thousand tons this year. 

Three years ago Andrew Langdon, well known as a member of the 
coal ship^ping firm of Langdon, Richardson & Co., of Chicago, and also 
from his business connections in Washington and elsewhere, came to 
Buffalo and established himself in the same business. Mr. Langdon rep- 

The Coal Trade. 205 

resents the coal interests of the Erie in Buffalo, and is the owner of the 
Enterprise and Grassy Island mines in the Pittston and Wilkes-Barre 
districts of the Wyoming Valley. In soft coal he handles the Blossbur^ 
and Daguscahonda varieties for the Erie company. His sales for last 
season were a fraction above two hundred and sixty thousand tons, about 
fifty thousand tons of which was consumed in Buffalo. 

The firm name of G. R. Wilson & Co., has descended from the father 
of the present members Messrs. W. T. and G. R. Wilson, who began 
business here in 1842. The coal trade was then in its infancy, and much 
more than now was represented by Blossburg coal. Gradually the com- 
pany worked into the hard coal trade as the consumption warranted. 
Blossburg coal comes from the Fall Brook and Morris Run mines to 
Buffalo by the Erie, and both hard and Blossburg coal are handled at the 
Erie trestles on the island. 

In hard coal G. R. Wilson & Co. handle the product of the mines in 
the vicinity of Pittston. Their business this year will reach about one 
hundred thousand tons. 

Until its alliance with the New York Central Railroad last year the 
Philadelphia & Reading Company made no particular effort to ship coal 
in this direction. For some years the company brought in the neigh- 
borhood of seventy-five thousand tons to Buffalo by canal, and this trade 
is continued. Since the completion of the Pine Creek Cross-cut railroad 
the coal has been coming in much larger quantities. The authorized 
agents of the company here are Albright & Co., who have for a long 
time managed the Reacfmg's Southern trade. Their establishment in 
Buffalo dates from last year. The canal traffic is in charge of Mr. R. R. 
Hefford as shipping agent. 

Mir. E. L. Hedstrom has been in the coal-shipping business about 
eighteen 3'ears, and deals largely in both hard and soft coal, though he 
is mostly interested in anthracite. This is of the Scranton variety and 
comes to the city by the Lackawanna road, over whose trestles it is han- 
dled. The soft coal handled by him is from the Falls Creek mines of the 
Reynoldsville district. His sales for Buffalo consumption will reach 
seventy-five thousand tons, while Western traflBc closely approximates 
three hundred thousand tons yearly. 

The firm of W. H. Davis & Co., was organized in the spring of 1882, 
though both the members have long been in the business. Mr. Davis 
was for some time at Suspension Bridge, and came to Buffalo about two 
years ago where he engaged in business as a middleman. Mr. Howard 
M. Smith has been identified with the trade for some fourteen years, 
for the last four years in Buffalo. For a number of years he was con- 
nected with the Pennsylvania Company. When the interests of the two 
were consolidated they became miners and shippers and have already 
built up a large and prosperous business. They own the Fairmount 

2o6 History of Buffalo. 

colliery at Pittston, which has a capacity of from eighty thousand to one 
hundred thousand tons. The firm has also a large trade in Lehigh and 
ships West by both rail and water. 

The firm of W. L. Scott & Co., though not miners, handle the out-put 
of several collieries, which would not, without including them, be reck- 
oned with Buffalo's coal traffic. They are established at Erie and 
have no office here ; still, about two hundred thousand tons of their coal 
is shipped yearly by lake from the B., N. Y. & P. R. R. trestles on the lake 
side of the Blackwell. The handling is in charge of William Berryman. 
The coal is from the Mahanoy district of the Philadelphia & Reading's 
mines. As the firm buys the whole out-put of several collieries it does 
not go under the name of Reading coal. The trestle used is a very good 
one, having thirty-eight pockets. The firm has been doing business in 
Buffalo about six years. 

The product of the Excelsior colliery is turned over by W. L. Scott 
& Co. to F. H. Goodyear, who handles one hundred thousand tons a 
year, shipping entirely by rail, and selling to local dealers. His trestle 
for the city trade, situated at Eagle and Emslie streets, is one of the best 
of its kind. Besides this amount of hard coal not included in other esti- 
mates, Mr. Goodyear buys the whole out-put of the Cameron Coal Com- 
pany's mine, in Cameron county, Pennsylvania. This is soft coal and 
amounts to about thirty-five thousand tons, nearly all of which is brought 
to Buffalo. The business has been in existence about twelve years. 

The soft coal interest has been much affected of late by the fast 
growing importance of the Buffalo, New York & Philadelphia Railroad, 
as an owner of coal land as well as in its capacity as a carrier of the 
product of outside mines. The recent purchase of the Fairmount Coal 
Company's mines in Clarion and Jefferson counties, Pennsylvania, 
brought the road two collieries in operation, and 5,000 acres of unde- 
veloped coal land. The Northwestern Coal & Iron Company, organ- 
ized in July, 1882, in the interest of the road, has from 2,000 to 3,000 
acres under lease in Venango aud Butler counties. The road has also 
bought the Long Run Coal & Iron Company's interest in Clarion 
county, Pennsylvania, which has one colliery of a daily capacity of forty 
cars. There is, lastly, the Buffalo Coal Company with 16,000 acres of 
coal lands in McKean county, Pennsylvania. A glance at these com- 
binations, ali of which are composed of stockholders of the B., N. Y. 
& P. R. R., will be sufficient to indicate the importance and rapid 
advancement of the road as a factor in the soft coal field. Of this coal 
the Fairmount is the best, being in great demand by gas companies as 
well as for steam purposes. Mr. Ensign Bennett, who built the Genesee 
Valley Canal branch of the road, has now settled down in Buffalo as 
general agent for the company and general manager of its coal interests. 
One hundred thousand tons will be brought here this year. 

The Coal Trade. 207 

The Rochester mines, owned by Bell, Lewis & Yates, are among the 
best-known in the Reynoldsville coal district, both in amount of out-put 
and quality of coal. Of the two hundred coke-ovens in this district, 
fifty-six belong to this firm. The monthly production is about 35,000 
tons. Last year these mines sent 250,ocx> tons of coal to BufiFalo, and 
25,000 tons of coke. During the present season the firm has made a con- 
tract for furnishing a large amount of its coal to the Canada Pacific Rail- 
way at Fort Arthur, on Lake Superior, The shipments are to be made 
by lake. 

The Hamilton Coal Company came to Buffalo five years ago, and is 
now one of the most important of those represented here. Last season 
it brought 100,000 tons of soft coal here. Perhaps one-half of this 
amount is consumed here, while the rest goes east war<t and into Canada. 
The mines are situated at Reynoldsville, Pennsylvania, whence shipments 
are made by the Erie, and B., N. Y. & P. R. R., with the* Rochester & 
Pittsburg already bidding for a share ot the trade. The Company have 
a transfer dock near the Coatsworth elevator in the Erie Basin. The 
Buffalo office is under the management of Mr. A. V. Armstrong, general 
western agent. 

The history of the Sandy Lick Coal company goes back to the open- 
ing of the old Sandy Lick mine near Dubois, Clearfield county, Penn- 
sylvania, in 1875, which proved a failure. The enterprise was abandoned 
for a more promising claim near by, which on working developed into 
the Hildrup mine, which produced one hundred and twenty-five 
thousand tons last year. The property is owned by the proprietors of 
the Harrisburg Car Manufacturing company, and the Buffalo office is in 
charge of Mr. E. M. Ashley, who became the company's agent hereabout 
two years and a half ago. At least two-thirds of the coal brought here 
by the company is sold in the city. Probably one hundred thousand 
tons for Buffalo would be a fair estimate. 

The well-known soft-coal firm of Smith, Cant & Co., was changed 
into the more representative name of Powers, Brown & Co., in March 
1880. The Buffalo interests are managed by Mr. Andrew Cant, while 
Mr. L Craig Smith is manager of the mines. These are known as the 
Sprague and Soldier^Run collieries, situated at Reynoldsville, Jefferson 
county, Pennaylvania. The company is a stock concern, and gets its 
name from Messrs. Joseph H. Brown, president, and Abram Powers, 
vice-president, of Youngstown, Ohio. Mr. Cant has spent twenty years 
in the soft-coal business in Cleveland, but came here in April, 1880. The 
mines have a capacity of from one thousand two hundred to one thou- 
sand four hundred tons a day. The coal reaches here by the Erie (South- 
western) and B., N. Y., & P. R. R. 

Frank Williams & Co., entered the wholesale soft-coal trade in 1873, 
and are proprietors of the Oak Ridge and Washington mines, beside 

2o8 History of Buffalo. 

part of the Pancoast mine, which are situated in the edge of the Rej- 
noldsville district near Fairmount station on the Allegheny Low Grade 
Railroad. Last year's trade was a little more than one hundred thou- 
sand tons, of which, perhaps, eighty-five thousand tons came to Buffalo. 

The Clearfield Coal company derives its name from Clearfield county, 
Pennsylvania, which is in the Reynoldsville region. Its mines are acces- 
sible by^the Rochester & Pittsburg lines connected with the Buffalo, 
New York & Philadelphia railroads. Although these mines have but 
two openings, the company owns a tract of twenty-two thousand acres 
in connection with them. The Buffalo agent is Mr. H. C. Springer, who 
also has the agency of the Snowshoe mines, located in Center county. 
Mr. Springer has been in the business in Buffalo seven years, and handles 
about sixty thousand tons of soft coal a year. He also sells largely of 
hard coal, which he buys from the Butler Colliery company. 

The firm of G. Elias & Bro. is among the new comers, having begun 
busmess here February 15, 1873. The hard coal handled is the Excelsior 
anthracite, from the Mahanoy field of the Shamokin region, and the soft 
coal from the Cascade mints of St Mary's, in Elk County. The busi- 
ness was removed to this city from Cameron, Pa. 

The firm of Bright, Dowdell & Co., located in Buffalo in March 
last and is represented by Mr. Dowdell, Mr. Bright being in the hard 
coal business in Philadelphia and seldom coming here. The company's 
supplies are drawn from the Ormsby and Hickory mines at Jackson Cen- 
tre, Mercer County, Pa., and are shipped over the Lake Shore and the 
Nickle-plate as well as the B., N. Y. & P. R. R. The two mines now 
have a capacity of seven hundred and twenty-five tons a day. The firm 
will have nearly one hundred thousand tons in 1883. 

There are seven coal trestles for lake shipment in Buffalo^ each 
having a water frontage oi from 600 to 1,000 feet — ^the Pennsylvania, 
Buffalo, New York & Philadelphia, Lackawanna, Delaware & Hudson, J. 
Langdon & Co., Lehigh, and Erie. The sum of $2,000,000 is a very low 
estimate of the value of these properties. The Lehigh Company owns 
six propellers of the largest size. Their names and value as gfiven by 
Lloyds, are as follows: — Cfyde, $90,000; Fred Murcur, $85,000; Oce- 
anica, $95,000; /f. E. Packer, $85,000; R, A, Packer, $58,000; Tacotna 
$119,000. This gives a total of $532,000 invested by this one company 
in tonnage. Forty-five other vessels are engaged in carrying coal when 
any is to be had. Their aggregate value as given by Lloyds is $1,450,- 
000, giving a total with the Lehigh of nearly $2,000,000 worth of prop- 
erty engaged in carrying the product of the coal fields from this port. 
Then there is the rolling stock. 

As to the capital invested in the business, each ton of hard coal 
costs for handling alone, from $3 to $5. Taking an even 4,500,000 tons, 
therefore, as the receipts, $18,000,000 is expended. Soft coal costs, per- 

The Live Stock Trade. 


haps, $2 a ton on an average, making an outlay for handling the million 
and a half of $3,000,000 — ^a total of both hard and soft coal of $21,000,000. 
Below are given two tables showing the estimated number of tons 
of hard and soft coal handled in Buffalo in the season of 1883 : — 


LLangdon & Co 200,000 

tier CoUiery Ca 100,000 

Lackawanna Coal Co 1,500,000 

Lehigh Valley Co 1,000,000 

A. J. Hoole & Co 100,000 

Pennsylvania Goal Co 300,000 

Delaware and Hudson Canul Co 300,000 

Andrew Langdon loo^ooo 

G. R. Wilson & Co 100,000 

Philadelphia & Reading Ca 75)O0O 

E. Lw Hedstrom-. 375»ooo 

W. H. DftTis & Co 80,000 

W. L. Scott aoo,ooo 

F. H. Goodyear..... 100,000 


Buffalo, New York, & Philadelphia 100,000 

Bell, Lewis & Yates 400,000 

The Hamilton Co 150,000 

The Sandy Lick Co 100,000 

Powers, Brown & Co 300,000 

F. Williams & Co 100,000 

The Clear6eld Co 60,000 

G. Elias& Brother 50,000 

Bright, Dowdell&Co 100,000 

Total •. 1,260,000 


Hard coal 4»530,ooo 

Soft coal 1,360,000 

Total.., 4i53<>>ooo Total 

The retail coal business of Bu£Falo is conducted by over a hundred 
dealers, distributed in different parts of the city. 

Live Stock Trade. 

To attempt to give the exact date when Buffalo first became a point 
where dealers bought and sold live stock, is an impossible task. The 
" oldest inhabitant " in the live stock trade cannot remember when there 
was not some traffic in this branch of the city's trade, which has now 
assumed such proportions that it is an undisputed fact that more actual 
money transactions are made at the live stock yards, than in any other 
special branch of Buffalo's business. Such facts as have been accessible 
from some of the older dealers in the trade are here given. 

About the first prominent point in the city used for marketing live 
stock was what was known as "Joslyn's Yard's," which were opened in 
the year 1852 at a point nearly a mile below what is known as the 
"Junction," where Swan and Seneca streets unite. The principal 
feeder was the old Buffalo & State Line railroad company ; a great deal 
of the stock coming to the city was also brought in by lake, and it 
was no uncommon sight in those days to see a drove of hogs, cattle and 
sheep over a mile in length reaching from the foot of Main street out 
towards the stock pens ; many a fine " porker" found his way from these 
droves under the bams or into the yards of residents along the road 
and was never claimed by the owner. A shortage of a few head in 
every drove was in those days not an unusual thing. 

Shortly after Joslyn's Yards were started, yards were used for the 
same purpose at a point where the Lake Shore and Erie railroads 
exchange freight or at what is known as the Elk Street Junction, by a 
Mr. Lowry, who was succeeded by Mr. James Metcalfe, who was for 

2IO History of Buffalo. 

years afterwards president of the First National Bank of Buffalo, and 
who also for years carried on the business of dealing in hogs at the pres- 
ent yards with Mr. Thomas Gushing, the firm being the well-known one 
of Metcalfe & Gushing. Mr. Metcalfe at the same time kept the " Drover's 
Home." The house is still standing and at present is occupied as a 
family residence. At the same time that " Joslyn's " and "Metcalfe's" 
were running, Mr. Gushing, the father of Mr. T. W. Gushing, of the firm 
of Metcalfe & Gushing, and since the death of Mr. Metcalfe, of the firm of 
Gibbs & Gushing, rented a large tract of land on the lake shore, about 
two miles outside of the present city limits, where hogs were yarded, 
fed and dealt in, the growing trade demanding more extensive quarters 
than the other yards afforded. 

About the year 1856, W. V. Woods, then a prominent dealer, opened 
yards on Seneca street, about a half-mile below " Joslyn's," where quite 
a traffic was carried on for about two years. There were also smaller 
yards or pens in different parts of the city on Hamburg street, Seneca 
street near Kinney's Alley, and Sw^n street. 

In the year 1855, Mr. B. Dickey rented what is known as the Tifft 
farm, which became the central point of trade. In 1856, Mr. Scott pur- 
chased Mr. Dickey's interest in the business, which he disposed of in 
1857 to Mr. Grocker, the father of the present superintendent of the 
New York Gentral yards. These were built in the year 1864, Mr^ 
Grocker gave up his Elk Street yards and took the management of the 
present yards, which he continued up to the time of his death in 187^^ 
when Mr. L. L. Grocker assumed the management. The business shortly 
after became greatly centralized, and other pens gave way to the march 
of improvement and to the present extensive yards which are second in 
size only to the largest in the world — those at Ghicago. 

The Erie yards, situated opposite the New York Gentral yards, were 
built in 1865, by a company composed of Mr. E. Swope, T. L. Kerr and 
W. V. Woods, under the general supervision of Mr. John Hugbee, of 
the firm oi Swope, Hugbee & Waltz, where, for a time, quite an extensive 
business was carried on. The greatest drawback to the trade at that 
time was the condition of the streets, which were not paved. 

The business at the yards has steadily increased. Many of the firms 
doing business there have been long established and are of undoubted 
standing, and the prospects were never brighter than at the present 
time, with new roads centering in the city and running through the rich, 
est country on the globe. With the added facilities for handling stock, 
and the great and steady increase of population, Buffalo's live stock trade 
must make rapid strides in the near future. 

The reader who has given the foregoing items even a cursory study, 
will have gained a good idea of the steady and rapid growth of the com- 
mercial and navigation interests of Buffalo. That such growth will con. 

The Board of Trade. 211 

tinue with the farther development ol the great West and the general 
increased wealth and prosperity of the country, no observing person 
can doubt. 

It is probable that Mr. Ball little knew what a prophecy he was 
uttering wfaea he wrote in his pamphlet of 1825 : — 

" When we contemplate the progress of the settlements in Ohio, the 
western parts of Pennsylvania and New York', for the last twenty years ; 
when we view the daily increasing current of emigration, the immense 
prostration of the forests yielding to the industry of the husbandman, 
the hardihood and intelligence of those who are making the ' wilderness 
blossom/ we can hardly limit the imagination to the extent of the wealth 
and population which will ultimate^ be comprehended within those 
vastly fertile regions. But that their surplus products will be wafted to 
this place and bartered for other commodities, or re-shipped on board 
canal boats for an eastern market, there can be no doubt ; and there can 
be as little doubt that upon the extent and profits of this commerce is 
based the future prosperity and opulence of this village." 

Buffalo Board of Trade. 

Although for many years after the completion of the Erie canal the 
trade and commerce of Buffalo had given earnest of future great- 
ness and promised that the city was to become an important market, 
yet there seemed to be no call for the formation of a body which might 
expedite the labor and afford conveniences for shippers until the year 
1844. In the winter of that year the growing need of such a body was 
felt which led to the incorporation of the Buffalo Board of Trade. It was 
the seventh society of its kind on the Western continent. R. H. Hay- 
wood seemed to be one of the leaders in the movement. In pursuance 
of his suggestion, and his offer to build a suitable room for the transac- 
tion of the business of the proposed Board, a meeting was held on Janu- 
ary 16, 1844, in the oflBce of Joy & Webster, then located in the Web* 
ster Block, where, after considering the propriety and possibility of 
organizing a Board of Trade, the gentlemen appointed a committee com- 
prising J. L. Kimberly, S. Purdy, Philo Durfee, R. C. Palmer, William 
Williams, (druggist), who drew up a constitution and by-laws. These 
were adopted at the second meeting held on. January 30, 1844. At the 
next meeting on March nth, R. H. Haywood was honored with the first 
presidency of the new society. The remaining offices were distributed 
as follows : George B. Webster, first vice-president ; William Williams, 
second vice-president ; Philo Durfee, A. H. Caryl, James HoUister, H. 
M. Kinne, J. C. Evans, Sidney Shepard, N. Hayden, J. L. Kimberly and 
George Palmer, directors; John R. Lee, treasurer; Giles K. Coats, sec- 
retary. In fulfillment of his promise to furnish a " Change," Mr. Hay. 
wood erected a building between September, 1844, and the following 
May, on the comer of Hanover and Prime streets, and designated it the 
Merchant's Exchange. On the loth of March, 1845, ^he first officers 

212 History of Buffalo. 

were re-elected. The Board first occupied the new building June 
5, 1845. Since that date the following have been the successive 
presidents-elect : — 

March 10, 1846, R. H. Haywood; March 13, 1847, Henry Daw; 
March 13, 1848, Philo Durfee; March 13, 1849, George B. Walbridge ; 
March 13, 1850, H. E. Howard; March 10, 185 1, H. E. Howard; March 
8, 1852, S. H. Fish; March 13. 1853, Samuel J. Holley ; March 13, 1854, 
H. Niles ; March 12, 1855, G. S. Hazard ; May 6, 1856, M. 8. Hawley ; 
March 7, 1857, G. S. Hazard; April 12, 1858, J. R. Bentley ; April 12, 
1859, A. Sherwood ; April 12. i860, C. J. Mann ; April 16, 1861, J. Parker ; 
April 14, 1862, G. S. Hazard; April 12, 1863, G. S. Hazard; April 12, 
1864, G. S. Hazard; April 11, 1865, S. H. Fish; April 11, 1866, P. S. 
Marsh ; April 9, 1867, P. S. Marsh ; April 15, 1868 ; J. H. Vought ; April 
I3» 1869, 8. 8. Guthrie; April 13, 1870, Charles G. Curtis; April 13, 
1871, James G. Sawyer; April 13, 1872, Alfred P. Wright; April 13, 
1873, Charles A. Sweet; April 13, 1874, E. P. Dorr; April 13, 1875, 
Cyrus Clarke; April 13, 1876, Cyrus Clarke; April 13, 1877, Alonzo 
Richmond; April 13, 1878, William H. Abell ; April 13, 1879, J^wett M. 
Richmond; April 13.1880, George Sandrock; April 13, 1 881, John B. 
Manning; April 13, 1882, Jacob F. Schoellkopf. 

So far as the records reveal the names of the several secretaries, 
they are given as follows : In i844-'45, Giles K. Coats ; 1867, J. J. Hen- 
derson ; 1859, T. C. Boynton, 1860,-62, H. Wilcox; 1863, William 
Thurstone. It it is much to Mr. Thurstone's credit that from 1863 to 
the present time, he has been in the office of secretary without interrup- 
tion, and without any solicitation on his part. 

On the 3d of March, 1857, a new charter was obtained and a new 
constitution and by-laws were adopted in adjustment to the growing 
business of the city and Board. The Buffalo Board of Trade, though 
avowedly organized for the promotion of convenience and expedition of 
business, has been of great benefit to the city in other respects ; the 
increase of business and the making of Buffalo a market for western 
produce, constantly sought by the members of the Board, could not but 
result in various advantages to the place. The Board has often been the 
instrument, and not infrequently the chief or sole cause, of reforms 
which have been of the greatest importance to Buffalo as a commercial 
port. The tendency of the railroads seems to have been to reduce rates 
from Chicago to the east without allowing a proportionate reduction 
from Buffalo, thus making the latter a mere way station. The Board has 
steadily resisted this tendency through the medium of municipal legis- 
lation and through improvements on the Erie canal. 

During the last war the Board was active in furnishing funds for the 
prosecution of hostilities, providing for the maintenance of troops and 
the relief of women who had devoted themselves to the cause. 

The Merchants* Exchange. 213 

In April, 1870, G. S. Hazard and Alonzo Richmond were commis- 
sioned by the Board of Trade to appear before the Canal Board to advo- 
cate a reduction in canal tolls in behalf of the State of New York. They 
succeeded to the extent of reducing the tolls a fraction over three cents 
a bushel for wheat, within a fraction of one cent on corn, a fraction over 
six mills on oats, on coal fifty per cent., and a liberal reduction on salt, 
lumber, staves, iron ore and many other articles. This was the final 
victory after fifteen years of continual warfare for reduction. 

The Board has worked hard for all enlargements and improvements 
upon this channel of commerce, such as the abolition of tolls, weigh 
locks, etc. Its exertions in bringing to light facts relative to canal navi- 
gation led to discussions of the questions in New York and interior 
towns, which resulted in large public meetings, the adoption of resolu- 
tions, the appointment of committees, etc. ; and finally culminated in 
1882, in the measures which made the canal free and abolished sinecure 

After so honorable a history it is gratifying to record that the pros- 
perity of the Buffalo Board of Trade is becoming more and more mani- 
fest They now own and occupy a new building on Seneca street, cor- 
ner of Pearl, built by them after the repeated agitations of years. The 
Up-town Movement, as it was called, assumed definite shape in April, 
1880, on the 17th of which month resolutions were adopted favoring the 
project. Various committees were from time to time appointed, until 
about May, 1882, when a call was issued for plans, and in July, Milton E. 
Beebe, of Buffalo, furnished plans in competition with fifteen others, 
which were accepted. In a few months the buildmg was in process of 
construction and was ready for occupancy in the fall of 1883. It 
extends one hundred and thirty-two feet on Seneca street, sixty-two 
feet on Pearl, and is one hundred feet in hight It consists of seven 
stories in addition to the basement. The Board occupy the fourth 
floor and nearly all of the fifth for their own purposes, the rest being 
used for offices. The building entire cost about $150,000, besides the 
cost of the lot, viz : $100,000. 

The active existence of the old organization has now in reality passed 
away and is succeeded by a society of broader scope, the Merchants* 
Exchange of Buffalo, which was chartered in the spring of 1882. The 
object of the Merchants' Exchange is best expressed in the words of the 
charter : — 

" The corporation shall have power, in and by their corporate name, 
to purchase, lease, hold and mortea^e real or lease-hold estate in the city 
of Buffalo, and to erect thereon a Duilding for the purpose of a Merchants' 
Exchange and such other purposes as may, in the opmion of the trustees 
of said corporation, tend to carry out the design of such institution and 

Sromote the convenient transaction of the business of dealers in grain, 
our, provisions, oil, coal, lumber, iron, and all other kinds of property 

214 History of Buffalo. 

in the city of Buffalo ; and when said building shall have been obtained 
or erected they shall have power to lease the same or parts thereof and 
to receive the rents and profits arising from said rents and apply the 
same as the board of trustees shall direct." 

In the by-laws of the organization the objects are further stated to 
be to provide and regulate a suitable room or rooms for the Merchants' 
Exchange in the city of Buffalo ; to inculcate just and equitable principles 
in trade; to establish and maintain uniformity in commercial usages ; to 
acquire, preserve, and disseminate valuable business information ; and to 
adjust controversies and misunderstandings between its members. 

On the 2d of July, 1883, the following were elected trustees for the 
year ending the second Wednesday in January, 1884: — 

James N. Scatcherd, Alfred P. Wright, Pascal P. Pratt, Robert P. 
Adam, Thomas Thornton, William Meadows, J. M. Richmond, Eric L. 
Hedstrom, Edward B. Smith, Richard H. Lee, Jacob F. Schoellkopf, 
Richard K. Noye, Charles A. Sweet. 

On July i6th, at the first meeting, the following oflBcers were 
elected : — 

James N. Scatcherd, President; Eric L. Hedstrom, Vice-President; 
Charles A. Sweet, Treasurer ; William Thurstone, Secretary. 



The First Steun Grain Elevator in the World — A High Honor for Buffalo — Old Methods of 
Loading and Unloading Grain — Joseph Dart's Experiment — Its Pronounced Success — 
The Fint Vessel Unloaded by Steam — Contrast Between Old and New Methods of 
Handling Grain — Increase of Grain Receipts Incident upon the Establishment of Elevators 
'— Rapid Building of Elevators — Consequent Competition in Elevator Charges — Organisa- 
tion of the Western Elevating Company — Its Permanence and Success — Record of the 
Building, Burning and Rebuilding of Buffalo Elevators. 

IT is a high honor to the city of BufiFalo that on her wharves was 
erected the first steam storage and transfer elevator in the world. Iti 
the light of the intimate connection existing between her present 
extensive elevator system and her large lake and commercial interests, 
this fact becomes one of significant importance. When in the year 1841 
the shipment of grain through Buffalo from the West had reached nearly 
2,000,000 bushels, having quadrupled during the preceding five years, it 
began to be apparent to observing men who foresaw the immense grain pro- 
ducing capacity of the vast western territory, that even the heavy shipment 

The Elevators of Buffalo. 215 

of 1 84 1 would prove insignificant beside that of single years in the not 
distant future. It at the same time became apparent that greatly increased 
facilities would soofn be required at Buffalo for the accommodation of the 
future grain shipments through the city. The 2,000,000 bushels handled 
in 1 841 was not received and trans-shipped without many delays and 
other vexations, owing chiefly to the slow methods then employed of 
lifting g^in from the holds of vessels in barrels with a tackle, weighing 
it with a hopper and scales swung over the hatchways of the craft and 
then carrying it into the warehouses on men's shoulders. Only ten to 
fifteen bushels were thus weighed at once and a day's work with a full 
complement of hands, did not exceed 1,800 to 2,000 bushels; even this 
small quantity could be handled only in fair weather, while in foul weather 
the harbor was often filled with numerous craft, awaiting a change 
in the skies.* 

It was this condition of aflfairs relative to the storage and trans-ship- 
ment of grain in Buffalo that led Joseph Dart, who was then in business 
in the city, to determine in 1841 on attempting the use of steam power in 
the work by applying it to the well known elevator and conveyor prin- 
ciple invented by Oliver Evans more than fifty years previous to that 
time. Mr. Dart, in the face of numerous obstacles and predictions of 
failure, accordingly began the erection of an elevator building in the 
autumn of 1842, on the banks of Buffalo creek at its junction with the 
Evans ship canal, where now stands the imposing Bennett elevator.f 
Mr. Dart's experiment was a pronounced success from the outset. 
Within a month from the time his elevator was put in operation, one of 
the leading forwarders of the port who had previously predicted that 
forwarders would not pay the high charges demanded for steam eleva- 
ting, offered Mr. Dart double his regular rates for accommodation in an 
emergency. The great saving in time that is now so well understood 
and appreciated, was apparent at once and the consequent benefits could 
not be disguised. As evidence of the economy in time, even when using 
Mr. Dart's modest establishment, he relates that the schooner John B. 

* Mr. Levi Allen, the oldest lake captain now living in Buffalo, relates that when he commanded 
the vessel named the UniUd States^ in i828-'29, he brought down a cargo of wheat of 6,000 bushels; 
this was then considered a heavy caigo. It was unloaded by the old method and four or five days 
were reqaiied to do the work. The UmUd Slates was one hundred and thirteen tons and was then 
looked npon as a large vessel. 

t Mahlon Kingman, then a forwarding merchant of Buffalo, attempted a few years earlier than 
Mr. Dart inaugurated his enterprise to operate an elevator by horse power ; but his plans were not 
successfnl. The venerable William Wells, who has been identified with the elevator interest since its 
first inception, was in the employ of Mr. Dart when he built the first elevator. Mr. Kingman told 
Mr. Wells and Mr. Dart that the steam elevator would not succeed and that '* Irishmen's backs 
were the cheapest elevators." Mr. Lewis F. Allen and a Mr. Lord also built an elevator at 
Black Rock in 1840, which ran by water power ; it had two marine legs, one of which was on the 
river side and one in the harbor ; the machinery in this elevator was designed by Mr. Robert Dunbar^ 
proprietor of the Eagle Iron works, and was made by Jewett & Root. 

2i6 History of Buffalo. 

Skinner, loaded with 4,000 bushels of wheat, came into port early one 
afternoon soon after his elevator was put in operation, was discharged 
and received ballast of salt, leaving the same evening ; she made her trip 
to Milan, Ohio, brought down a second cargo and discharged it and on 
her return to Milan she went out in company with vessels which came in 
with her on her first trip and which had just succeeded in getting their 
cargoes unloaded by the old methods. 

Joseph Dart's elevator when compared with many of the stately 
and capacious structures of to-day was an insignificant affair ; its capac- 
ity was only 55,000 bushels, but it was doubled three years after it was 
built and another marine leg was added ; it had a slip under it for boats. 
The machinery in this elevator was designed by Robert Dunbar, who 
has done similar work for a large proportion of the elevators of Buffalo ; 
it was made by Jewett & Root. The original Dart Elevator was burned, 
a fate that has befallen many of its successors. The first vessel unloaded 
by Mr. Dart's elevator, was the schooner Philadelphia, Captain Charles 
Rogers; she was loaded with 4,515 bushels of wheat consigned to H. 
M. Kinne and George Davis. The first cargo of corn unloaded by the 
elevator was from the South America, Captain A. Bradley, 3,145 bushels, 
June 22, 1843. Dart's elevator unloaded during the first year of its 
existence 229,260 bushels of grain. 

In the early years of the steam elevator, it was currently believed 
that about eight hundred bushels a day was all the grain that could be 
raised from a vessel and correctly weighed. Mr. Dart's* elevator was at 
first built with the buckets holding about two quarts each and set twenty- 
eight inches apart. With that arrangement he raised 1,000 bushels an 
hour. A little later he placed his buckets twenty-two inches apart, and 
still later sixteen inches, until he reached a capacity of 1,800 to 2,000 
bushels an hour. But even these latter figures look insignificant when 
contrasted with those representing the transfer capacity of some of the 
great elevcrtors of to-day. The interested visitor may now stand beside 
such a magnificent structure as the Connecting Terminal Railroad 
Elevator, for example, and see a vessel moored at the wharf loaded with 
60,000 bushels of wheat. Her hatchways are opened, the " legs " 
of the two towers (one of which is movable for a distance of eighteen 
feet) are dropped upon the great mass of grain in the hold of the vessel, 
the machinery is started, and the buckets, holding twelve quarts each, 
dip with marvellous rapidity down into the wheat and rush on upward 
into the building, each carrying its load, and in from four to five hours 
the entire cargo is safely stored in -the bins— a cargo which, by the old 
method of " Irishmen's backs," would have required three or four weeks 
to discharge. Into the capacious bins in such an elevator as the one 
mentioned, about 1,000,000 bushels of grain can be stored, and over 

• JoMpih Dart died September 27, 1879, aged eighty yetr». 


The Elevators of Buffalo. 217 

19,000 bushels have been elevated into it in one hour, while at the same 
time two or three canal boats and three trains of cars can be simultane- 
ously loaded. These and accompanying figures show the magnitude of 
the elevating business in Buffalo, without which the shipment eastward 
of the immense crops of western grain, would be almost impossible. 

The success of elevating grain by steam produced the usual effect 
of active competition. The grain receipts at the Buffalo port increased 
with astonishing rapidity, as the reader has already learned, from the 
time when Joseph Dart unloaded the first vessel by steam. This made 
buSy times and profitable work for elevators and they rapidly multiplied ; 
faster, perhaps, than the immediate prospect warranted. As the number 
of elevators increased their owners came into direct competition with 
each other. As far. as advantages to the forwarder were concerned, 
one elevator owner could offer very little over another, for there is noth- 
ing in the process of elevating grain that improves the cargo wherein 
one owner might excel another. As a consequence, the elevator that 
handled grain at the lowest rates, even by a very small sum on a large 
shipment, could secure the business. This state of things could not con- 
tinue ; men engaged in the business saw that in spite of the fact that it 
cost a large sum of money to build an elevator and that therefore their 
number might not soon exceed the requirements of commerce, still a ruin- 
ous competition was almost sure to be the final result. This led to the 
formation in the year 1859 of ^^^ Western Elevating Company, an organ- 
ization that has existed ever since that time,controlling and directing almost 
the entire elevating interest of the port with a large measure of success, as 
well as of satisfaction to elevator owners. The venerable Wm. Wells was 
the first President of this company,* which office he held three years ; 
he was succeeded by P. B. Sternberg, and he by James C. Harrison. 
In the year 1866, William H. Abell was given the office and a year later 
A. G. Williams took it. He occupied the position two years when Mr. 
Abell was again made President and has held the office ever since. The 
harmonious existence of this company during so many years is the best 
evidence that it has been beneficial to elevator owners. 

The entire elevating interest of this port is now substantially in the 
control of the Western Elevating Company, and such has been the case 
during its existence; when new elevators have been erected, such 
arrangements have been made with their owners as to induce them to 
place their elevating property in the hands of the company. It is but 

* Mr. Wells is the oldest male resident of Buffalo who was born in the city and has ever since 
lived here. His father, Joseph Wells, settled in Buffalo in i8o3. His first son bom here was the 
late Aldricfa Wells, who was the first white male child bom in Buffalo; his birth occurred in August, 
1803. William Wells was bom in 1806. When he was a young man he was in the employ of 
Joseph Dart and aided in building the first steam elevator. Since that time he has been prominently 
identified with the business. Chandler J. Welk, who lives in Buffalo at this time, is another son of 
Joseph Wells and has also long been largely interested in the elevating business. 

2i8 History of Buffalo. 

natural, perhaps, that such a policy, no matter how liberally and impar- 
tially carried out, should give rise to charges by those interested that the 
Western Elevating Company is a monopoly and inimical to shippers and 
the best interests of the commerce of the city. It has been argued that 
the storage and trans-shipment of the grain received at the port could 
be accomplished with a much smaller number of elevators than have 
been built and consequently at lower rates. This is, on the other hand, 
disputed, from the fact that on some occasions the receipts vary a million 
bushels within twenty -four hours and that breaks occur in the canal, 
preventing eastward shipments and demanding enormous storage capac- 
ity. This agitation and controversy * led to an attempt in the winter of 
1882-83, to regulate and control the elevating business bylaw; the act 
that was introduced failed of passage in the Senate. As matter of history 
relative to the present profits of the elevating business, even when skill- 
fully conducted by a powerful company, the following figures are 
pertinent : — 

According to the figures for the year 1882, the receipts of grain 
were about 52,000,000 bushels ; for handling and storing this the elevators 
received $560,000, as follows : — 

For elevating and five days' storage $455)000 

For steam shoveling 65,000 

For additional storage 40,000 

The expenses were as follows : — 

Taxes, certified to by the comptroller $ 81,500 

Insurance • 60,000 

Repairs, labor, fuel, etc 270,000 

Paid for dredging 5,000 

This statement leaves a balance of $153,500 with which to pay the 
interest on over $7,000,000 investment. There are other features of the 
elevating business that have contributed to this agitation and attempted 
legislation, but it would be out of place to discuss them here. 

The item of $60,000 charged up to insurance in the above state- 
ment indicates that elevator owners are compelled to pay the insurance 
companies heavy rates. But if this is true, the losses to the companies 
by the burning of elevator buildings have been enormous. 

* Much has been said and written against these Buffalo elevators, but the fact that they furnish 
such excellent facilities to carriers and shippers, insuring quick dispatch and freedom from costly 
delays, is an advantage that can be scarcely overestimated. These elevators are owned by private indi- 
viduals, excepting that the New York Central & Hudson River Railroad corporation owns two of 
the largest, and the New York & Western Railroad one. Several of these elevators have machinery 
attached, whereby 60,000 to 70,000 bushels of wet or damaged grain can be dried every twenty-four 
hours.^ WilHam Tkunionis Pampkiei om the Commirte ofBuffah. 

The Elevators of Buffalo. 219 

The grain products of the great west are handled at Buffalo more 
largely than at any other point on the lakes. In 1880 the Western Elevat- 
ing Company handled about 99,000,000 bushels; in 1881 about 49,000,000 
bushels, and in 1882 50,934,922 bushels. Now, when it is remembered 
that the fickle winds may any day bring into the harbor a whole fleet of 
grain-laden craft, or a break in the canal to the eastward may detain 
large consignments in port for days together^ then the inestimable use- 
fulness and paramount necessity of the present vast elevating and stor- 
age system becomes apparent. Three and one-half million bushels of 
grain can be received and transferred in one day, by the combined 
elevators of Buffalo, at the present time. 

The following statement gives the names of all of the elevators that 
have ever been built in Buffalo, the dates when they were erected, when 
burned and re-built, and their capacity, as far as it has been possible to 
obtain them : — 

Dart Elevator^ capacity 50,000 bushels, built 1842-43 ; enlarged 1846; 
first machinery put in by G. W. Schwartz; machinery put in the second 
leg by Jewett & Root ; designed by Robert Dunbar ; burned about 

Evans^ built from old ware-houses in 1847 ! machinery put in by R. 
Dunbar; burned in 1863 and rebuilt, the machinery put in by B. Clark; 
again burned in 1864 and rebuilt, the machinery put in by John 
Stutz and made at the Eagle Iron Works ; now owned by the C. W. 
Evans and the George W. Tifft estate. Storage capacity, 300,000 bushels ; 
transfer capacity, 97,000 bushels. 

Watson, built in 1862 ; designed by R. Dunbar, and machinery made 
at the Eagle Iron Works ; owned by Mrs. Watson and Dr. Gary. Stor- 
age capacity, 600,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 288,000. 

Merchants (tower) built in 1862; designed and machinery put in by 
R. Dunbar and Brad. Clark ; made at the Eagle Iron Works. Storage 
capacity, 30,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 96,000 bushels. 

Reed, built in 1847 ; burned and rebuilt in i859-'62 ; machinery 
designed by R. Dunbar, and made by G. W. Tifft & Co. Storage capac- 
ity, 200,000; transfer capacity, 96,000. Again burned August 25, 1874. 

Wilkeson, built in 1861 ; burned September 9, 1862 and rebuilt in 
1863; designed by R. Dunbar and machinery made at the Eagle Iron 
Works and put in by R. Dunbar and Brad. Clark. Storage capacity, 
280,000 bushels; transfer capacity, 96,000 bushels. 

Bennett, (formerly Dart) built in 1864; machinery designed by R. 
Dunbar and Brad. Clark, made at the Eagle Iron Works and put in by 
Brad. Clark. Storage capacity, 600,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 
96,000 bushels. 

Coburn, built in 1861 ; burned September 9, 1862, and rebuilt as the 
C. J. Wells, in 1863; machinery designed and put in by R. Dunbar and 

220 History of Buffalo. 

Brad. Clark, and made at the Eagle Iron Works. Storage capacity, 
350»ooo bushels; transfer capacity, 96,000 bushels. 

Richtnond, built in 1863 ; designed by R. Dunbar and Brad. Clark, 
and machinery put in by Clark ; made at the Eagle Iron Works. Stor- 
age capacity, 280,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 96,000 bushels. 

Hatchy built in 1848; burned and rebuilt as*the Marine. Storage 
capacity, 1 50,000 bushels. 

Lyon^ built in 1881 ;* machinery made at Eagle Iron Works and put 
in by Mr. Hamble. Storage capacity, 100,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 
96,000 bushels. First built as the Main Street elevator and burned in 
1865 ; rebuilt as the Hazard in 1867. 

Excelsior^ designed and built by R. Dunbar and Brad. Clark in 
1 862. Storage capacity, 30.000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 96,000 bushels ; 
burned in 1876. 

SturgeSy built in 1862; burned July 30, 1866 and rebuilt in 1867; 
designed by R. Dunbar and machinery made at the Eagle Iron Works 
and put in by R. Dunbar and Brad. Clark. Storage capacity, 300,000 
bushels ; transfer capacity, 100,000 bushels. Fulton (tower) built at the 
same time by the same parties. 

Marine^ first built as the Hatch^ by R. Dunbar ; burned and after- 
wards rebuilt in 1881 ; designed by R. Dunbar, machinery made at the 
Eagle Iron Works and put in by Paul Kingston. Storage capacity, 150,. 
000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 96,000. 

City Elevator y first built by O. Bugbee in 1846, and machinery put in 
by R. Dunbar; burned November 8, 1859, ^"^ rebuilt; machinery by 
R. Dunbar and Brad. Clark; again burned in 1863 and rebuilt; 
machinery made at the Eagle Iron Works and put in by B. Clark. Stor- 
age capacity, 600,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 130,000 bushels. 

Swi/tsure, first Kingman's, built about 1840; afterwards Sterling's, 
built in 1847 ; rebuilt in 1862 ; machinery made at the Eagle Iron Works 
and put in by G. Milsom. Storage capacity, 200,000 bushels ; transfer 
capacity, 96,000 bushels. 

Sternberg (A) first built by Smith Brothers ; machinery put in by R. 
Dunbar and Brad. Clark in 1847 ; burned and rebuilt in 1862, by R. Dunbar 
and Brad. Clark. Sternberg (B) built in 1861 by R. Dunbar and Bfad. 
Clark ; machinery all made at the Eagle Iron Works, Storage capacity, 
350,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 96,000 bushels. Burned in 1883. 

Commercial built in 1879, machinery put in by John Stutz, and made 
at the Howard Iron Works; burned February 3, 1882. 

W/ueler, (formerly Wells) built in 1861 ; machinery made at the 
Eagle Iron Works and put in by Brad. Clark. Storage capacity, 200,- 
000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 72,000 bushels. 

Niagara (A) built in 1867; designed by Mr. Johnston; machinery 
made at the Eagle Iron Works. Niagara (B) built in 188 1 on the site of 

The Elevators of Buffalo. 221 

the New York & Erie elevator, which was built in 1862 ; the machinery 
made by Tifft & Co., and put in by R. Dunbar and Brad. Clark. The 
machinery of Niagara (A) was put in by Brigham Clark and made at 
the Eagle Iron Works. Storage capacity, (A) 800,000 bushels; of 
Niagara (B) 1,200,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 130,000 bushels each. 

Tijf^tf (formerly Plympton), designed by Mr. Johnston and built in 
1868 ; machinerj- made by TiflFt & Co. Storage capacity, 350,000 bushels ; 
transfer capacity, 96,000 bushels. 

HollisteTy built in 1847 ; burned May 22, 1858; machinery put in by 
Abram Schwartz. 

Erie Basin, machinery put in by Brad. Clark, made at Tifft & 
Company's. Storap'e capacity, 200,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 
96,000 bushels. 

Exchange, built in 1863 ; machinery put in by Brad. Clark, and made 
at the Eagle Iron Works. Storage capacity, 250,000 bushels ; transfer 
capacity, 96,000 bushels. 

Erie,hu\\tm 1879; burned August 23, 1882, and rebuilt in 1883; 
machinery made at the Howard Iron Works. Storage capacity, 650,000 
bushels; transfer capacity, 130,000 bushels. 

Empire, biiilt in 1861 ; machinery put in by Brad. Clark, and made 
at the Eagle Iron Works. Storage capacity was 200,000 bushels, and 
transfer capacity 96,000 bushels ; since burned. 

Ohio Basin, {?\g'&ioot)b\n\t in 1863-64; designed by R. Dunbar, 
and machinery put in by John Stutz ; built by G. W. Tifft ; burned in 

Buffalo^ built in 1846, by H. M. Kinne ; storage capacity, 125,000 
bushels; transfer capacity, ijlS,ocx> bushels ; burned about 1870. 

Connecting Terminal Railroad Company Elevator, built in 1882; 
designed by R. Dunbar, and machinery put in by Brigham Clark ; made 
at the Eagle Iron Works. Storage capacity, 1,000,000 bushels; transfer 
capacity, 250,000 bushels. 

Union, machinery put in by Brad. Clark, and made at the Eagle 
Iron Works. Storage capacity, 90,000 bushels; transfer capacity^ 
70,000 bushels. 

Coatswortk,{^T?LnsitT) hmitin 1863; machinery made at the Eagle 
Iron Works, and put in by R. Dunbar and Brad. Clark. Storage capacity, 
40,000 bushels ; transfer capacity, 96,000 bushels. 

In addition to these, there have been burned the Corn Dock eleva- 
tor, September 17, 1865 ; the Grain Dock, in 1861 ; the Wadsworth, June 
14, 1878 ; the Excelsior, (tower) and the Hazard elevator; the Kinne & 
Wadham, (Buffalo) and the Rust & Co. ; the American Giant (floater) 
was destroyed by storm in 1882. 

Besides the elevators mentioned in the foregoing list, there are now 
in operation here the Brown, storage capacity 250,000 bushels ; the C. 

222 History of Buffalo. 

J. Wells, capacity 350,000 bushels ; the National Mills, capacity 100,000 
bushels ; the William Wells, (formerly Williams) capacity 200,000 bush- 
els ; and Schreck*s, capacity 100,000 bushels. There are also the follow- 
ing named transfer towers : the Chicago, capacity 20,000 bushels ; the 
Fulton, capacity 30,000 bushels ; the Northwest, capacity 40,000 bushels; 
the Horton, and the Kellogg & McDougall, capacity 70,000 bushels. 
There are also the following named floaters : the Free Trade, Free Canal, 
Marquette, Ira Y. Munn, Niagara, and the Buffalo. 

Prominent among the men who have been conspicuous in Buffalo 
in connection with the building of elevators, it will be proper to mention 
the names of H. M. Kinne, who built the third elevator in the harbor, 
(the Buffalo) and later built the first Wilkeson and the first Sturges ; I. 
T. Hatch, who built the Hatch and the first Marine ; George W- Tifft, 
builder of the New York & Erie and the Tifft ; Dean Richmond, John 
Wilkeson, D. S. Bennett, William and C. J. Wells, and Captain Hazard. 



The First Bank in Buffalo ~ The Bank of Niagara and its Officers— Its Early Reverses^ A Second 
Bank Projected — The U. S. Bank and its Directors— Opening of Sut)scription Books for 
the Bank of Buffalo — An Injunction upon the Project — Its Removal —The First Board of 
Directors — A Speculative Mania in i835-*36 — Marvellous transactions in Land — The Final 
Crash and its Disastrous Effects — The Banks Involved — Injunctions against the Banks — 
A Panic Meeting— The Era of ** Hard Times "— Benjamin Rathbun*s Career — The 
Panics of t8 57 and 1873**74 — Htstuiy of the Banks of Buffalo — Savings Aid Associations 

IN the Buffalo Gazette of November 23, 18 15, appeared the announce- 
ment that Jonas Harrison, Ebenezer Walden, Augustus Porter, Charles 
Townsend, S. H. Salisbury, Jonas Williams, Samuel Tupper, Benja- 
min Caryl and Oliver Forward would apply to the Legislature at its 
next session, for an act of incorporation of a bank in the village of Buf- 
falo. This bank was organized in July of the following year(i8i6) and 
named the Bank of Niagara ; it was the first Bank in Erie county. The 
capital of the bank was fixed at what was then a very large sum — five 
hundred thousand dollars, but the amount to be paid in on each share of 
one hundred dollars, was only six dollars and twenty-five cents. The 
directors were from a wide range of country ; they were — Augustus 
Porter, of Niagara Falls ; James Brisbane, of Batavia ; A. S Clarke, of 


The First Bank in Buffalo. 223 

Clarence ; Jonas Williams and Benjamin Caryl, of Williamsville ; Isaac 
Kibbe, of Hamburg ; Martin Prendergast, of Chautauqua county ; 
Samuel Russell and Chauncey Loomis (exact residence unknown), and 
Ebenezer F. Norton, Jonas Harrison, Ebenezer Walden and John G. 
Camp, of Buffalo. On Tuesday, July 16, i8i6,the directors elected Isaac 
Kibbe president of the bank, and Isaac Q. Leake, cashier. 

This may be said to have been the first financial movement of a pub- 
lic nature that occurred in the village of Buffalo. The Bank of Niagara 
was chartered for sixteen years ; it continued to do a satisfactory busi- 
ness until July, 1818, at which time and during the following month, it 
suffered " a vexatious run ;" but it withstood the onslaught. In January, 
1 8 19, Benjamin EUicott, Jonas Williams and William Peacock, of the 
Board of Directors elected late in the preceding year, resigned and 
Charles Townsend, Oliver Forward and S. Wilkeson were elected to fill 
the vacancies. The Niagara Bank was located in a brick building front- 
ing on Washington street, on the corner of North Division street. 

In the Buffalo Patriot of March, 23, 1819I, was printed an editorial in 
which the editor expressed himself as " happy to learn that the opposi- 
tion [to the bank] which has so long existed, has ceased and the directors 
are adopting measures to resume business.*' Further reverses also attend- 
ed the institution during that summer, as indicated by the following 
notice which appeared in the Emporium of August 12, 1826: — 

•' Bank of Niagara. — Notwithstanding the reverses of fortune which 
this institution has had to encounter, we have ever been its friends. 
Under such circumstances it is a matter of gratulation to us that its bills 
are redeemed in specie, ' counted and well told.' We understand that 
the direction of the bank is to be exclusively in the hands of the president, 
C. Van Antwerp, late sheriff of Albany, and William Williams, cashier, 
(late teller of the bank.") 

The lack of support and confidence in the bank, as indicated by the 
above quotation, was followed by a more prosperous period. Mr. Van 
Antwerp acquired a majority of the stock, came on to Buffalo and so 
directed the affairs of the institution as to inspire confidence in it, and it 
continued in business until the expiration of its charter. 

During the last half of the year 1826, the subject of a second bank in 
Buffalo was discussed and a commission was appointed to ascertain what 
amount of cash would be necessary to properly facilitate business. A meet- 
ing was held on the i6th of December to hear the report of this commis- 
sion ; this consideration of the subject was prompted by a growing desire 
on the part of the citizens of the place to have a branch of the U. S. Bank 
established in Buffalo. Nothing came of the agitation, however, until 
the latter part of 1829 ; on the 15th of September, of that year, a com- 
mittee of the directors of the U. S. Bank made a report in favor of the 
project, which report was confirmed and the following Board of Direct- 
ors appointed : William B. Rochester, Charles Townsend, R. B. Hea- 

224 History of Buffalo. 

cock, Joseph Stocking, Albert H. Tracy, Sheldon Thompson, David 
Burt,Wm. A. Bird, Augustus Porter, David E. Evans, Wm. Peacock, James 
Wadsworth and Lyman A. Spalding. Wm. B. Rochester was made presi- 
dent of the bank. The first meeting of the Board of Directors was held on 
Monday, October 26, 1829, at which John R. Carpenter was appointed 
cashier, Joseph Salter, teller, and Charles Taintor, clerk. H. B. Potter 
was soon after added to the Board of Directors. The bank was on the 
northeast corner of South Division and Main streets. 

On the 1 6th day of May, 1830, subscription books were opened for 
three days at the Eagle tavern, for the establishment of the Bank of 
Buffalo. James McKnight, David £. Evans, I. T. Hatch, Benjamin 
Rathbun, G H. Goodrich, S. G. Austin and Pierre A. Barker were 
named as the bank commissioners. The capital of the bank was fixed 
at $200,000, and $1,654,250 were subscribed. The distribution of the 
shares created some dissatisfaction and opposition, the result of which 
was the granting of an injunction by Judge Gardner, vice-Chancellor, 
stopping further proceedings in the matter. This injunction was removed 
by mutual consent, a few days before it was to have been argued, and 
the following Board of Directors of the new bank were elected: — 
Guy H. Goodrich, Hiram Pratt, Benjamin Rathbun, Major A. Andrews, 
Joseph Stocking, George Burt, William Ketchum, Henry Hamilton, 
Henry Root, George B. Webster, Noah P. Sprague, Stephen G. Austin^ 
and Russell Haywood. Guy H. Goodrich was elected president ; 
Hiram Pratt, cashier, and S. G. Austin, teller. This bank b^;an business 
on Tuesday, September 6, 1831. 

In the disastrous financial revulsion and panic that swept the entire 
country in i835-'36, Buffalo siiffered as severely as most places similarin 
size and character, and much more so than many. The inhabitants had 
raised themselves and their city to a high financial and speculative alti- 
tude, and the fall was proportionately destructive in its effects; the city 
recovered from the horrors of the cholera epidemic of 1832, and from 
destructive fire, only to plunge into an abyss of financial ruin. 

Early in the year 1836 the speculative fever which had been gaining 
headway during the two preceding years, rose to its highest pitch. The 
city had increased in population from 8,653 in 1830, to 15,661 in 1835, which 
fact aided in strengthening confidence in the minds of citizens,that the rapid 
advance in prices of real estate and the general inflation in all other 
directions, was founded upon substantial and permanent groundwork. 

It has been estimated that during the period of speculation, more 
than 25,000 conveyances of land were made here, a large proportion of 
which were for city property ; and that the entire amount involved in 
the transactions was nearly or quite $25,000,000; several single pur- 
chases amounting to $100,000 and some to $200,000. The buildings 
erected in the city during 1835 ^nd 1836 were estimated to have cost 

The Speculative Mania in 1836. 225 

That was a time when ** to be sane was seeming madness, when to 
be mad was common sanity." The year 1836 dawned with prospects of 
brilliant promise, with dazzling visions of easily-acquired wealth and all 
the pleasures and blessings that are usually attributed to its influence ; 
it closed under a cloud of almost universal bankruptcy. We need not 
here attempt to speak of the causes of the great revulsion ; they have 
often been discussed and all persons of intelligence have their own 
opinion on the subject ; it is sufficient to say that they had their origin 
in the very financial foundation of the government, as developed in the 
policy of President Jackson and in antagonism to that policy by the 
United States Bank and its connections. But whatever the cause of 
that era of splendid anticipations and lamentable disappointments, the 
tide swept over the land and Buffalo felt its effects to as great a degree, 
perhaps, as any other section of the country ; its position at that time 
rendered such a result certain. But a few years before she had put on 
the garb of a city, and she was just beginning to realize the benefits flow- 
ing from her growing commerce, as stimulated by the construction of 
the Erie caiial, while her growth during the preceding five years had 
been rapid. These facts, with the plenitude of an expanded currency, 
were sufficient to turn Buffalo into a hot-bed of wild speculation and 
extravagant anticipation. While the tide was rising, banks multiplied 
and their managers who had thus become able to control large resources 
in depreciated currency, engaged heavily in real estate and other si>ecu- 
lations, bought liberally of luxuries and thus aided in turning the heads 
of their more conservative neighbors. Prices of lands and goods oi all 
kinds were greatly advanced, money was plenty, easily got and as readily 
spent. Usurious rates of interest prevailed, money commanding from 
three to five per cent, a month, with an unusual demand at those figures* 
This apparent anomaly is explained by the fact that many persons were 
led into borrowing money at enormous rates of interest, in the hope th^t 
with it the same large profits that were being made by their neighbors, 
might also be realized by them ; thus almost the entire community was 
drawn into the whirlpool. It was a general carnival for the usurers; 
everybody wanted money and there was little thought of what was td 
be paid for its use. Broker's offices multiplied and many of the smaller 
fry conducted a profitable business on the street. 

The crash that followed was precipitated by the issue of President 
Jackson's " specie circular," which required all payments for public lands, 
which had been eagerly located and absorbed throughout the west, to be 
made in specie. This circular seemed to suddenly awaken men to their 
senses ; they began to realize that there were some things in the universe, 
(one of which was the solid ground) that could not be purchased at 
depreciated prices with a depreciated currency ; their extravagant antic- 
ipations received a death blow, and the lofty, glittering castles, founded 

226 History of Buffalo. 

only upon credit, fell to the ground. Banks contracted around the vic- 
tims, a general suspension of specie payments followed and general panic 
prevailed everywhere. All through the year 1837, the general depre- 
ciation in value in everything that had a value, inaugurated an era of 
" hard times " from which recovery was a slow process.* As the tide of 
speculation reached its climax in the city of Buffalo, so the reaction here 
was greatest. Fortunes disappeared more rapidly than they had been 
acquired; mortgages were foreclosed on all sides, and land that had 
been eagerly sought at thirty or forty dollars per foot, would scarcely 
bring as much per acre. Land is known in the city, which sold early in 
1835 at $2 a foot — ^about $500 an acre. It was sold and resold in parcels 
during the excitement, until twelve months after it sold at the rate of 
$10,000 an acre. In 1865 the same land was worth but $18 a foot 

One of the principal moving spirits in the rising tide of speculation 
in Buffalo in those days, one who for a brief period rode high on the 
wave of apparent prosperity, only to go down overwhelmed in his own 
ruin and disgrace, was Benjamin Rathbun. The following account of his 
career in this city is from Johnson's History of Erie county : — 

" Having begun as a hotel-keeper previous to 1825, he had eminently 
succeeded in that vocation, and had made the name of' Rathbun's Eagle ' 
synonymous with comfort and good cheer. When the flush times came 
on he plunged into business and speculation with a boldness and an 
apparent success which made him the envy of thousands. He built the 
American hotel. He built and managed a grand store on the east side 
of Main street. He entered into contracts of every description and 
gave employment to thousands of workmen. He bought and sold land, 
not only in Buffalo, but throughout the whole section of the country. 
His ideas were of the grandest kind. He laid the foundation of an 
immense hotel and exchange opposite ' the churches/ which was designed 
to occupy the whole square between Main, North Division, South 
Division and Washington streets. The rotunda was to be two hundred 
and sixtv feet high. 

"Although prices began to dra^in the summer of 1836, yet Rathbun 
still ur^ed forward his gigantic projects. He bought land and laid out 
a j^rand city at Niagara Falls, and advertised an auction of lots to come 
off on the 2d of Augi:rst, to extend as many days as might be necessary. 
On the appointed day a great number of bidders from all parts of the 
compass were present. During the forenoon the bidding was spirited 
and sales were numerous. At the dinner table Rathbun sat opposite Mr. 
G. R. Babcock, the junior member of the law firm of Potter & Babcock 
who, like almost everybody else, combined the land business with that 
of their regular profession. 

' ' I observe, Mr. Babcock,' said Rathbun, • that you made no bids this 


• With the general crash, prices of Buffalo real estate fell from a figure which they did not again 
reach in thirty years—in some instances have not reached yet. In i86a Mr. G. H. Salisboiy com- 
pared the prices of fifty unimproved lots on thirty-seven different city streets, as they were sold in 
1836, with their estimated value in the year first named, and found that the transfer price of 1836 was 
more than double the value of the same property in z86a. 

Benjamin Rathbun's Career. 227 

'''No/ replied the young man, 'the lots were not in what I thought 
the most desirable locality.' 

" 'Ah, well/ replied the great speculator, ' come with me after dinner 
and show me some lots you would like to buy, and I will have them 
put up.' 

"Accordingly, after dinner the two strolled out over the ground of 
the future city, and Rathbun appeared to be in the best of spirits. He 
chatted, laughed, told stories, discoursed of his plans, and seemed to 
look forward to a future as prosperous as his past was supposed to have 
been. As they returned to the hotel, Mr. Babcock observed a carnage 
at the door. Some one called to Mr. Rathbun to hurry up. He did so, 
entered the carriage with one or two others and drove off toward Buffalo. 

" Yet, while he was thus jesting with his companions and talking of 
his future achievements, he knci w that his forgeries to a large amount nad 
been discovered, that the country was flooded with his forced paper, and 
that the gentlemen with whom he rode off had got everything arranged 
for him to make an assignment of all his property. On his arrival at 
Buffalo he was arrested. The forgeries haa been discovered in Philadel- 
phia by David E. Evans, whose name Rathbun had forged as endorser 
on notes to a large amount, which he had deposited as security in a bank 
in thiEit city. Returning to Buffalo, Evans confronted Ratnbun, who 
confessed that this was but a tithe of the spurious paper he had set afloat* 
An assignment was arranged, but in the mean time Rathbun allowed the 
sale at the Falls to take place, and kept up appearances to the very last. 

" The arrest of Rathbun hastened, so far as Buffalo and vicinity was 
concerned, the financial catastrophe impending over the whole country. 
Work was stopped on all his numerous enterprises. The workmen clam- 
ored for their pay and almost broke out in mob violence. The assignees 
paid them off, though it required nearly all the assets of the estate. The 
millionaires of the •day turned pale witn consternation. If Rathbun had 
failed who was safe? His forgeries amounted to more than a million 
dollars. It was found that he had been committing them for several 
years, takine up the old notes as they became due, with money obtained 
by means ofnew notes, also forged. 

" His brother. Col. Lyman Rathbun, and his nephew, Rathbun 
Allen, were implicated with him, and the latter turned State's evidence. 
He was' the one who actually wrote the forged names, under the direc- 
tion of his uncle." 

Rathbun's trial opened at Batavia on the 29th of March, 1837 » he was 
found guilty and sentenced to State prison for a term of five years. After 
serving his time he tried his old business of hotel keeping in different 
localities, the last of which was a boarding house in New York city, 
where he finally died at the age of about eighty years. 

The panic did not come upon Buffalo entirely without warning; 
During the year 1835, or earlier, men of foresight and financial sagacity 
saw the approaching storm, and fortunate were those whose affairs were 
so well in hand that they were enabled to safely weather it. On the 
evening of May 3, 1837, a "panic meeting" was held in the city, of 
which John Lay was chairman. The meeting was addressed by Millard 
Fillmore and others and resolutions were adopted, but it does not 

228 History of Buffalo. 

appear that any especial good resulted. Another meeting was held on 
Thursday, March 22, 1837, to get an expression of the citizens for or 
against a general banking law. A committee of eight was named, com- 
prising P. A. Barker, S. C. Hawley, M. Fillmore, H. R. Smith, Ebenezer 
Johnson, E. VanBuren, Wm. Ketchum and Moses Baker, to draw a 
series of resolutions, and the subject was ably and thoroughly discussed ; 
more extended banking facilities were demanded, as the only means for 
the future successful transaction of business. 

The banks of Buffalo had, it appears, caught the general infection 
to some extent, and their methods and condition was brought tp the 
notice of the State banking authorities. On Saturday, May 6, 1837, the 
banks were served with injunctions by the Chancellor, at the instance 
of the Bank Commissioners. This action was looked upon in Buffalo 
as an act of great injustice, as the banks were considered solvent Par- 
tiality was charged against the Commissioners by many citizens, who 
anticipated still more serious impairment of credit in the city on account 
of the action of the Chancellor. To quiet this feeling the Commissioners 
publicly stated that the banks were not proceeded against on account of 
fears of their insolvency ; the fact was, complaints had been made that 
the banks had violated their charters in their methods of business. In 
order to partially restore confidence, the Chancellor issued a circular 
stating that the notes of the Buffalo banks would be received at the 
offices of all collectors of State revenues. 

The first movement that promised substantial relief in the crisis, 
was the resumption of specie payments in New York city, which was 
announced about the middle of May, 1837, and was followed by similar 
action in this city. In June the injunctions against the banks were 
removed. In 1838 the banking law was passed, which exerted a pow- 
erful influence in restoring confidence and facilitating business. 

Following the tardy recovery from the financial crash described 
above, was inaugurated an era of prosperity for the city of Buffalo, 
which was not interrupted until 1857. During the twelve or fifteen 
years preceding that date, the commerce of the growing West poured 
its profitable business into the city, giving it a wide reputation for pros- 
pective growth and thus attracting to its population accessions which 
insured that growth. The surrounding country bad reached a position 
of tolerable independence ; the farming community had in most cases 
wholly or in large part paid for their lands ; plank roads extended from 
Buffalo and its ready market, directly to the doors of the farms and over 
them were drawn the products which were turned into money in the 
city. But, as has so often been the case, this very tide of prosperity 
brought its own destruction ; business of all kinds gradually became 
excessively overdone ; railroads and other great undertakings were reck- 
lessly projected in all parts of the country ; the banks in many States 


/^. ^^TLoA/ud^crru 

The Banks of Buffalo. 229 

inflated the currency beyond necessity or prudence, and another crash 
followed. The climax was reached in the fall of 1857 and was precipi- 
tated by the suspension of specie payments in New York. The money 
market had become more and more stringent and it is believed by those 
most competent to judge, that if the New York banks had postponed 
their suspension a little longer, the failures in Buffalo would have been 
much more numerous than they were. As it was, two or three banks 
succumbed and prices of real estate sank to a mere tithe of what they 
had been. In the language of one of our oldest bankers, " It seemed as 
if the whole town was not worth a dollar." 

But the crash of 1857, serious as it was, was less injurious by far, in 
its results, and recovery was much more rapid, than was the case in 
i836-'7- In the second revulsion, speculation and inflation had not been 
carried to such an extent as before, and, as the people were generally 
possessed of more means, and were more firmly established in different 
branches of trade and manufactures, the city was better ablfe to with- 
stand the effects of the crisis ; still, the " hard times " continued through 
i858-'9, only to be overwhelmed in the excitement of approaching war. 

Since that epoch, financial affairs in Buffalo do not need especial 
review. There was another dark period in i873-'74» ending like its pred- 
ecessors, in a general depreciation of values, failures and stringency in 
all financial affairs ; but compared with the earlier crises referred to, it 
was unimportant. During the last ten years, nothing has occurred here 
to obstruct the machinery of business in any of its various details. A 
good deal of local uneasiness was occasioned in 1875, by the discovery 
of a loss to the city treasury of about $150,000, through the malfea- 
sance of a city official ; but aside from that, a general feeling of financial 
security has prevailed and prosperity has reigned. 

Banking Interests. 

The banking interest of Buffalo is at the present time in a condition 
that is eminently satisfactory to the business public of the city, giving 
amplie facilities for the financial requirements of the community and 
inspiring confidence in its stability. The gross amount of capita) 
invested in the banking houses of the city exceeds $3,000,000. 

When the panic of 1836 swept over Buffalo, there were but two 
banks in existence here ; these were the United States Branch Bank, 
established in 1829, of which William B. Rochester was president, and 
the Bank of Buffalo, which was established in 1831. The following is a 
brief sketch of the banks now in existence. 

Bank of Attica, — Of the banks now doing business in Buffalo, the 
Bank of Attica is the oldest, dating from its first organization. It was 
established in 1836, in the village of Attica, N. Y., and was removed to 
Buffalo six years later, chiefly upon the recommendation of Mr. E* G. 

230 History of Buffalo. 

Spaulding, who was the son-in-law of Mr. G. B. Rich» the proprietor of 
the bank at that time ; the institution was first located in Spaulding's 
Exchange, where it remained until 1861. The bank was reorganized and 
incorporated under the banking laws of the State in 1850, with a capital 
of $160,000; this amount was necessarily increased June i, 1856, to 
$200,000, and, to accommodate a greatly augmented business, was again 
increased October 24, 1856, to $250,000, at which time a surplus fund of 
$80,000 was created. The first dfficers of the bank after its incorpora* 
tion of 1850, were: — Gaius B. Rich, President; Directors, G. B. Rich, 
Andrew J. Rich, John S, Ganson, Horace White, Hamilton White. 
The inspectors of this election were E. G. Spaulding, John S. Ganson, 
Alexander W. Harvey. G. B. Rich resigned the presidency of the bank 
in 1852, on account of ill health, and his son, the late A. J. Rich, suc- 
ceeded to the office. The present officers of the bank are : — G. B. Rich, 
President ; F. L. Danforth, Cashier ; J. W. Smith, Assistant Cashier. 
Directors :— E. G. Spaulding, P. P. Pratt, George S. Hazard, F. L. Dan- 
forth and G. B. Rich. The latter named gentleman is grandson of 
the founder of the bank and was made its president in 1880. 

The Manufacturers and Traders' Bank, — This is the leading financial 
institution in Buffalo in point of capital, which is $900,000. The bank was 
incorporated under the State laws, on the 24th of March, 1856, and has 
remained a State bank since. It was opened for business on the 29th of 
August, 1856, with a capital of 200,000. The bank was organized with 
the especial purpose of giving the manufacturers and tradesmen of the 
city more extensive and liberal banking facilities than they had before 
enjoyed ; its success from the outset was extraordinary and the demands 
made upon its capital were so heavy, that in 1859 ^^ ^^^^ increased to 
$500yOOO, which was again raised in 187010^900,000, making it the largest 
bank in tlie State outside of New York city. The average deposits in 
this bank amount to $2,409,545.31, and its earnings $193,808.57, while its 
entire resources are $3,503,353.88. This bank has never suspended 
specie payments. Its first president was Henry Martin, and its first 
vice-president was Pascal P. Pratt, both of whom have filled their offices 
ever since. The first officers were: — Henry Martin, President: Pascal 
P. Pratt, Vice-President ; D. F. Frazell, Cashier. Directors :— G. R. Wil- 
son, Sidney Shepard, M. P. Bush, Stephen V. R. Watson, P. P. Pratt, 
Bronson C. Rumsey, F. H. Root, Alexander H. Anderson, William H. 
Glenny, Wells D. Walbridge, George Truscott and John Wilkeson. Mr. 
Wilkeson resigned May 9, 1856, when Mr. Martin was elected in his 
place, and at the same time was made president. The bank was first 
located at No. 2 East Swan street, whence it was moved to 273 Main 
street, in December, 1856. In 1861 it removed to No. 22 West Seneca 
street. In April, 1880, it occupied the handsome iron building on the 
corner of Main and West Seneca streets. The bank holds its elegant 

'^ \ 

^^ i^y^i '^yio'^^'^nty'na. 

The Banks of Buffalo. 231 

offices under a twenty year's lease. The present officers are: — 
Henry Martin, President; Pascal P. Pratt, Vice-President; James 
H. Madison, Cashier; Henry Conover, Assistant Cashier. The pres- 
ent Directors are a» follows:— Henry Martin, Pascal P. Pratt, Sher- 
man S. Jewett, Francis H. Root, William H. Glenny, Bronson C. Rum- 
sey, Gibson T. Williams, Myron P. Bush, Richard Bullymore, John D. 
HiU, George B. Hayes, Franklin D. Locke, James H. Madison. 

The Marine Bank of Buffalo. — This bank was organized on the 8th 
of July, 1850, by the following named gentlemen: — George Palmer and 
James M. Ganson, of Buffalo, James S. Wadsworth of Geneseo, J. P. 
Beekman, of Kinderhook, John Amot, of Elmira, John Mayer and Con- 
stant Cook, of Bath, and William P. Grimm, of Medina; these gen- 
tlemen were the only stockholders and they were all made directors. 
George Palmer was elected President and James M. Ganson, Cashier. 
The bank has had six presidents — George Palmer, fourteen years ; Ever- 
ard Palmer, two years ; Charles Ensign, one year ; Jewett M. Richmond, 
two years ; Myron P. Bush, eleven years, and S. M. Clement, who was 
elected December 31, 1879. 1° ^^^ y^^ '^SS the capital was increased 
from $170,000 to $255,000, and again in 1854 to $300,000; in 1859 ^^ ^^s 
reduced to $200,000, which it has since remained. Previous to 1855 the 
bank was located at 79 Main street; it was removed thence to 112 Main 
street, and then to its present offices, 220 Main street The present 
officers are S. M. Clement, President ; J. M. Richmond, Vice-President ; 
W. K. Allen, Cashier. Directors — S. M. Clement, J. M. Richmond, 
Sherman S. Jewett, J. M. Hutchinson, Alonzo Richmond, G. T. Williams, 
B. C. Rumsey, John W. Bush. 

WhiUs Bank of Buffalo, — This bank was organized on the 4th of 
April, 1853, by George C. White and William Williams, who had con- 
stituted the private banking firm of White & Williams for many years 
previous. These two gentlemen were the first board of directors ; Mr. 
White was the first president of the bank and Mr. Williams the first 
cashier. The capital stock paid in was $100,000, which was increased 
to $200,000 on the 1st of March, 1854. The succeeding board of direc- 
tors consisted of George C. White, William Williams, John M. Hutch- 
inson, Fred K. Gridley, Mathew Johnson, Dr. Josiah Barnes and James 
M. Smith. The successive presidents of this bank have been George C. 
White, Rufus C. Palmer, John B. GriflFin, James D. Sawyer, and James 
D. Warren, the present incumbent. Following are the present officers 
and directors : — ^James D. Warren, President ; Rufus L. Howard, Vice- 
President; Elisha T. Smith, Cashier. Directors — James D. Warren, 
Stephen O. Bamum, Jacob F. Schoellkopf, Rufus L. Howard, Nelson K. 
Hopkins, Elisha T. Smith, George P. Sawyer. The bank is located at 
16 West Seneca street. 


232 History op Buffalo. 

The Third National Banh. — This institution was organized February 
14, 1865, with a cash capital of $250,000; it began business the following 
month. The first president was A. T. Blackmar, who was succeeded in 
1869 by Abraham Altman and he on August 25, 1881, by the present 
incumbent, Charles A. Sweet. The first board of directors was com- 
posed of A. T. Blackmar, Robert G. Stewart, Thomas Chester, Abra- 
ham Altman, Henry Cone, Horace Utley, D. H. Winans, Nathan C. 
Simons, and Edson G. Shoemaker. The first cashier was Elisha T. 
Smith ; he was succeeded September i, 1876, by Samuel A. Provoost, Jr.; 
December 23, r88i, he was succeeded by the present incumbent. The 
present officials of the bank are as follows : — Charles A. Sweet, President ; 
Jacob F. Schoellkopf, Vice-President ; B. B. Hamilton, Cashier. Direc- 
tors — ^Jacob F. Schoellkopf, Pascal P. Pratt, Emanuel Levi, L. L. Lewis, 
Jacob Dold, Charles G. Curtiss, Robert Keating, John D. Hill, Charles A. 
Sweet. The bank is located at 275 Main street 

Thi Farmers' and Mechanics National Banh. — ^This is one of the oldest 
financial institutious in Buffalo. It was established in Batavia about 1840 
and was removed to this city under a special act of the Legislature in 
1852, at which time E. G. Spauldmg was elected its president He has 
filled the office ever since. John S. Ganson was the first president. 
Previous to May 28, 1864, this was a State bank ; on that date it was organ- 
ized as a National bank, the second in Buffalo. The first board of trus- 
tees were E. G. Spaulding, Rufus L. King, John S. Ganson, William R. 
Gwinn, H. Pompelly. The capital of the bank was $100,000, which has 
since been increased to $200,000. Cornelius R. Ganson was the first 
cashier of the bank; he was succeeded by Edward Pierson when the 
institution was made a National bank, in 1864; at that time the trustees 
were E. G. Spaulding, Samuel F. Pratt, Edward Pierson, S. K. Worth- 
ington, Philip Dorsheimer, H. M. Kinne. H. G. Nolton was assistant 
cashier, and was elected cashier January 10, 1865. On the 8th of Janu- 
ary, 1867, Franklin Sid way was made assistant cashier; S. F. Pratt was 
elected vice-president on the 12th of January, 1869. January 14, 1873, 
Mr. Sidway was elected vice-president, and S. S. Spaulding was made 
assistant cashier. June 26, 1873, H. G. Nolton tendered his resignation 
as cashier, to take effect July ist. January 13, 1874, at the annual election, 
E. G. Spaulding was elected president ; Franklin Sidway, cashier; S. S. 
Spaulding, assistant cashier. January 12, 1875, E. R. Spaulding was 
added to the bank officials as assistant cashier. These gentlemen last 
named formed the board of directors of the bank and have remained as 
such until the present time. The institution is located in Spaulding's 
Exchange ; it does a heavy business and enjoys the confidence of the 
business community. 

The Merchants' Bank of Buffalc^-^his bank was incorporated May 
3, 1 88 1, and opened for business on the 9th of the same month, with a cap- 


The Banks of Buffalo, 233 

ital of $300,000. The first officers were— Alfred P. Wright, President; 
James R. Smith, Vice-President ; J, W. Bridgman, Cashier ; Henry S. 
Sprague, Assistant Cashier. Directors— Alfred P. Wright, James R. 
Smith, John B. Manning, Charles W. McCune, Washington BuUard, J. 
F. Schoellkopf, Robert B. Adam, William H. Walker, William H. Grat- 
wick, J. Fir menich and J. R. Stewart. This Board still remains, with 
the exception of Messrs. Firmenich, Stewart and Bullard, who are 
replaced by George W. Miller and Geoi^ Urban, Jr. W. H. D. Barr 
is now Assistant Cashier. This is a State bank ; it made its first divi- 
dend of four per cent, in January, 1883, and another of the same per 
cent, in July. 

Bank of Comm€rct.—T\i\9^ institution was incorporated under the 
State laws of 1873, beginning business July 28th the same year, with a 
capital of $200,000. The first officers of this bank were — R. G. Stewart, 
President ; Thomas Thornton, Vice-President ; H. G. Nolton, Cashier. 
Directors — George H. Preston, E. T. Evans, N. C. Scoville, James R. 
Smith, John White, John M. Gilbert and H. G. Nolton. In 1875, Thomas 
Thornton was elected President ; H. G. Nolton, Vice-President ; and E. 
W. Hayes, Cashier. The present Board of Directors are — Thomas 
Thornton, James R. Smith, W. H. Gratwick, E. L. Hedstroro, N. C. 
Scoville, John White, H. G. Nolton, E? R. Jewett, E. W. Hayes. This 
bank has accumulated a large surplus fund and paid dividends of ten per 
cent per annum since its organization. It is located at 188 Main street. 

The Bank of Buffalo.— This institution was incorporated January 2$, 
1873, ^^^ opened for business on the 26th of May following ; its capital 
was $300,000 ; it has since remained the same. The first officers were — 
Sherman S. Jewett, President ; George B. Gates, Vice-President ; Albert 
L. Bennett, Cashier. The first Board of Directors comprised Sherman 
S. Jewett, Francis H. Root, Gibson T. Williams, George B. Gates, P. P. 
Pratt, Sherman S. Rogers and Edward Stevenson. The present officers 
of the bank are Sherman S. Jewett, President ; Josiah Jewett, Vice-Pres- 
ident ; William C. Comwell, Cashier. The Directors remain the same 
as above g^ven, except the substitution of Josiah Jewett for George B. 
Gates. The bank is located at 236 and 238 Main street 

The German Bank of Buffalo. — This bank was organized under the 
State laws in May, 1871, with a capital of $100,000. The incorporators 
of the bank were F. Augustus Georger, Philip Becker, J. F. Schoellkopf, 
Jacob Dold, Philip Houck, Rudolph Hoffeld and Francis Brunck. The 
first cashier was S. W. Warren. The only changes that have taken 
place in this management are the withdrawal of Philip Becker and Fran- 
cis Brunck, who were succeeded by John Hauenstein and Albert Ziegelcs 
The present bank officers are F^ Augustus Georger, President ; Philip 
Houck, Vice-President ; Eugene A. Georger, Cashier. The bank occu- 
pies commodious offices in the German Insurance Building, comer of 
Main and Lafayette streets. 

234 History of Buffalo. 

Th€ German Atfurican Bank.—T\k\% institution was organized May 
lo, 1882, and began business at 424 Main street, comer of Court, on the 
22d of the same month, with a capital of $100,000, which is fully paid in. 
Its business has rapidly increased and now reaches half a million dollars. 
The officers of the bank are Henry Hellriegel, President; Alexander 
Martin, Vice-President ; Henry W. Burt, Cashier. Directors— Henry 
Hellriegel, Charles Greiner, John P. Diehl, Alexander Martin, L. L. 
Lewis, John Schaefer, Francis Handel, Joseph Timmerman, Henry 

Erie County Savings Bank,—T\i\^ institution was incorporated April 
10, 1854, and opened for business September i, of the same year. It then 
occupied a small part of a store owned by William C. White, on the cor- 
ner of North Division and Main streets. The first officers of the bank 
were William A. Bird, President; Gibson T. Williams, Vice-President; 
Stephen V. R. Watson, Second Vice-President; Cyrus T. Lee, Secretary 
and Treasurer. Mr. Bird held the office of president up to the time of 
his death in August, 1878, at which time James C. Harrison, (then vice- 
president) was made president ; John Allen, Jr., was at the same time 
made first vice-president and Dexter P. Rumsey, second vice-president 
The original trustees were William A. Bird, Gibson T. Williams, Stephen 
V. R. Watson, Henry Roop, Stephen W. Howell, Richard Bullymore, 
Jacob Krettner, Michael Danner, William C. Sherwood, William Wilke- 
son, Augustus Georger, James Wadsworth, Noah P. Sprague, C. J. Wells, 
Myron P. Bush, James C. Harrison, Noah H. Gardner, William Fiske, 
John R. Evans, Bradford A. Manchester. In June, 1857, the bank 
removed to the corner of Main and Erie streets, iii what was known as 
the old Buffalo banking building ; at that time the deposits amounted to 
about $^00,000. In 1865 the site for a new building was secured on the 
corner of Court and Main streets, and the handsome and substantial 
stone structure, the first floor of which the bank now occupies, was erec- 
ted ; it was finished and occupied August i, 1867. The amount of depos- 
its on the first of April, 1883, was $11,165,166.17. The present officers 
and trustees are as follows: — Gibson T. Williams, President; John 
Allen, Jr., Vice-President; Cyrus P. Lee, Secretary and Treasurer. 
Trustees — John Allen, Jr., Dexter P. Rumsey, Gibson T. Williams, 
William C. Sherwood, Alexander Brush, Henry M. Kent, George W. 
Townsend, F. Augustus Georger, Ethan H. Howard, George Howard, 
Cyrus P. Lee, Alonzo Richmond, David R. Morse, Alfred P. Wright. 

The Buffalo Savings Bank, — This bank was chartered May 9, 1846 
and began business on the 6th of July of the same year, in the stone 
building on the comer of Main and Erie streets. Following are the 
names of its first officers and trustees : — Charles Townsend, President : 
Francis J. Handel, Vice-President ; Nathan K. Hall, Attorney ; Robert 
Pomeroy, Secretary. Trustees— Albert H. Tracy, Millard Fillmore, 



1 U % t^' *m^^ 

The Banks of Buffalo. 23$ 

John L. Kimberly, Noah H. Gardner, Francis J. Handel, Frederick 
Dellenbaugh, Jacob Seibold, Elijah D. Efner, Russell H. Heywood, War- 
ren Bryant, Daniel Bowen, Isaac Sherman, William Tweedy, Hiram P. 
Thayer, Benjamin Caryl; Charles Townsend, Francis C. Brunck, and 
Ernst G. Grey. In July, 1831, a lot twenty-three feet fronton Main 
street, chirty-eight feet south of Court, was purchased and a building 
erected for the bank; the structure was destroyed by fire in January, 
1865, when the tot on the comer of Washington and Lafayette streets 
was purchased and the building now occupied by the bank erected ; it 
was completed about May ist, 1867. The succession of presidents. of 
this bank since the death of Charles Townsend, in September, 1847, ^s as 
follows:— Russell H. Hey wood, Albert H. Tracy, Elijah D. Efner 
Edward L. Stevenson, E. G. Grey, Warren Bryant. A resolution was 
passed by the Board of Trustees in February, 1854, limiting accounts in 
the bank to $1,000; in July, 1868, this amount was increased to $3,onrL 
The amount of deposits on the ist of April, 1883, was $8,290,184.94. The 
present oflBcers and trustees are as follows : — Warren Bryant, President, 
E. G. Grey, First Vice-President ; E. L. Stevenson, Second Vice-Presi- 
dent ; John U. Wayland, Secretary ; C* D. Marshall, Attorney. Trus* 
tees — Warren Bryant, E. L. Stevenson, J. W. A. Meyer, C. ftodenback, 
O. H. Marshall, Edward Bennett, John L. Kimberly, Jr., Ernst G. 
Grey, Silas Kingsley, John D. Hill, Francis H. Root, Henry Hellriegel, 
John P. Diehl, William H. Glenny, Jr., Edward P. Beals. 

The Western Savings Bank^ of Buffalo. — This institution was incor- 
porated dn the 9th of July, 185 1, with the following officers and 
trustees : — Dean Richmond, President ; George W. Tifft, First Vice-Presi- 
dent ; James Holhster, Second Vice-President ; Heman B. Potter, Attor- 
ney. Trustees: — Geo. Palmer, Seth C. Hawley, Elijah Ford, Henry 
K. Smith, Rufus C. Palmer, John R. Lee, Lucius H. Pratt> Israel T. 
Hatch, Geo. C White, Wm. O. Brown, Philip Beyer, F. H. Tows, L. L. 
Hodges, Henry Martin, Gains B. Rich, Geo. W. TiflFt, Nelson K. Hop- 
kins ; James L. Barton, Secretary and Treasurer. In 1872, the' building 
now occupied by the bank on the corner of Main and Court streets was 
erected at a cost of $120,000; it is owned by the bank. The amount of 
deposits on the ist of April, 1883, was $2,899,690.20. Following are the 
names of the present officers and trustees: — Joel Wheeler, President; 
Geo. Urban, First Vice-President ; Philip Houck, Second Vice-Presi^ 
dent; W. H. Beyer, Secretary and Treasurer. Triistees: — Philip 
Beyer, Geo. Urban, Philip Houck, J. Weppner, Jacob Scheu, Gerhard 
Lang, N. Ottenot, L. L. Hodges, H. Stillman, Geo. Fisher, M. Mesmer, 
H. C. Persch, W. C. Bryant, Joel Wheeler. Wm. H. Abell. 

The National Savings Bank. — This bank was organized in i8<$7, 
with the following officials: — Stephen G. Austin, President; Daniel C. 
Beard, Vice-President;' Edward S. Dann, Secretary and Treasurer: 

236 History of Buffalo. 

Hon. A. L. Baker, Attorney. Trustees : — Stephen G. Austin, Myron 
P. Bush,. Seth Clark, Erastus Scoville, Peter Rechtenwalt, Laurens Enos, 
Frederick W. Breed, Peter J. Ferris, Jacob Weppner, Charles E. Young, 
Joseph Churchyard, John S. Fosdick, William H. H. Newman, Geo. 
Zimmerman, Geo. W. Tifft, Clifford A. Baker, Daniel C. Beard, Geo. 
Pugeot, Hugh Webster, Peter Emslie, Geo. Jones, Reuben G. Snow, 
James E. Ford, James D. Sawyer, James Miller, James A. Chase, Michael 
Lettau, Philo A. Balcom. Mr. Austin died in 1872 and was succeeded 
in the office of President by Daniel C. Beard, the present incumbent. 
The deposits in this bank on the ist of April, 1883, amounted to $1,079,- 
792.79. The bank is located on the corner of Main and Erie streets. 
Following are the names of the present officials: — Daniel C. Beard, 
President ; James McCredie, First Vice-President ; R. L. Burrows, Sec 
ond Vice-President; Edward S. Dann, Secretary and Treasurer. Trust- 
ees:— Daniel C. Beard, Peter J. Ferris, Hugh Webster, Peter Emslie, 
Paul Goembel, Jno. C. Harvey, Jas. McCredie, R. L. Burrows, Geo. R. 
Potter, Robert N. Brown, Jno. Wilkeson, Frederick W. Breed, James F. 
Trott, Thos. Chester, Gtfo. T. Enos, Wm. B. Flint, Thos- B. French. 

The Buffalo Lpan^ Trust and Safe Deposit Company, — This institution 
was chartered May 12, 1881, and began active business January 14, 1883. 
Its paid up capital is $137,000, which it has authority to increase to 
$2,000,000. It is the only trust company in the city, and has on deposit 
$318,000. The officers are: R. V. Pierce, President; Geo. Urban, Jr., 
First Vice-President; James H. DeGraff, Second Vice-President; C. E. 
Clark, Secretary. Trustees : — Ray V. Pierce, George Urban, Jr., James 
H. DeGraff, George H. VanVleck, John A. Miller, Thomas Lothrop, 
Daniel E. Bailey, W. C. Russell, John Esser, James A. Roberts, H. G. 
Nolton, Joseph Timmerman, August Beck, Jacob Uebelhoer, Louis 
Pfeiffer, Philip Bachert, Adam J. Benzing. 

Since the financial revulsion of 1836, the following list of banking 
institutions were established in Buffalo, but closed their business after 
periods varying from one to ten years, about in the order in which they 
are given : — 

Merchants' Exchange Bank, the United States Bank, Erie County 
Bank of Buffalo, The Bank of America, Bank of Commerce (1839,) 
Mechanics' Bank of Buffalo, The Western Agency Bank, the Merchants^ 
Bank, Farmers' and Drovers' Bank, Commercial Bank of Buffalo, The 
State Bank of New York, the Union Bank, the Phoenix Bank, The 
Patchen Bank, Oliver Lee & Co.'s Bank, The Exchange Bank of Buffalo, 
The Pratt Bank, The Bank of Lake Erie, Walter Joy's Bank of Buffalo, 
the Hollister Bank, the Merchants' Bank of Erie County, the Buffalo 
City Bank, the Sacketts Harbor Bank, the Buffalo Trust Company, the 
Queen City Bank, the New York and Erie Bank, the International Bank, 
the Clinton Bank, the Emigrant Savings Bank, E. S. Rich's Bank of 

Advantages of Buffalo as a Manufacturing Center. 237 

Exchange, the Mechanics' Savings Bank of Buffalo, the Security 
Savings Bank, the City Bank of Buffalo, the Commercial Bank of 
Buffalo, the First National Bank. 

Saving and Aid Associations. 

About the year 1866 was inaugurated in Buffalo what are known as 
saving and aid associations. These have rapidly multiplied, until there 
are now about sixty of them in the city ; they are all based on a similar 
plan, though differing more or less in details. Their principal objects 
are to assist the poorer class of people in securing homes ; this is accom- 
plished by the members paying into the associations a small weekly sum, 
thus accumulating a fund which is devoted to the purchase of real 
estate, the erection of buildings and making other improvements ; or to 
aid the members, by the use of the accumulations, in the purchase of 
homes, and further, to accumulate a fund to be returned to the members 
who do not desire to make real estate investments. Many of these 
associations have been converted into Land Associations, of which there 
are now eight in the city, owning at least three hundred acres of land 
within the city limits ; their general plans and purposes are similar to 
those of the aid associations. Nearly all of these associations are made 
up of Germans, and they have accomplished much good. 



AdTanftages of Buffalo as a Manofacttiring Onter-~ Development of Manufacturing Interests — The 
" Association for the Encouragement of Manufacturing in the City of Buffalo " — The Iron 
Industry — Early Iron Works — Review of the Industry — Furniture Manufacturing— The 
Leather Industry-^ The Brewing Interest — Malting in Buffalo —The Milling Interests- 
Manufacture of Boots and Shoes — Miscellaneous Manufactures — The Wholesale Trade of 
Buffalo — Growth of Trade in the City. 

AS a location for the rapid and profitable development of general 
manufacturing interests, the city of Buffalo possesses advantages 
vastly superior to most cities. Previous to about the year 1855, 
or less than thirty years ago, Buffalo was essentially a maritime city ; 
the railroad system westward had not then reached a position where it 
could materially affect the lake commerce, and almost all the products 
of the growing West were wafted down the waters of the great inland 
seas and, of necessity, were emptied directly upon the wharves of Buffalo, 

238 History of Buffalo. 

or were transferred to the long lines of boats that were continually start- 
ing on their slow voyages through the Erie canal to tide- water. The Queen 
City sat at the foot of the great chain of lakes, secure in her commercial 
position and at rest in the belief that energy in other directions was 
almost unnecessary to her future solid growth and permanent prosperity. 
But the financial revulsion of 1857, with other gradually progressing 
changes, dispelled this illusion ; railroads to the west were built and, by 
their quicker means of transportation, drew away the lake passenger 
traffic to a large extent, while they attacked the freight business through 
their capacity for winter shipment at a time when lake navigation was 
impossible. These things and their immediate consequences, awakened 
the people of Buffalo to a realization that there were other material 
interests to which they not oAly might, but should direct a portion at 
least of their energies and capital. Buffalo recovered from her period 
of partial commercial prostration within the five years following 1857, 
and assumed a condition ot healthful growth and prosperity which yet 
continues; but a lesson had been learned and its teachings were, fortun- 
ately, heeded. Men of means and foriesight began to study and then to 
realize more clearly than they yet had done, the advantages possessed 
by the city as a manufacturing center ; they did not lose faith in her 
future commercial supremacy, but they saw that the city needed per- 
manent industrial interests that could stand independent of the fluctua- 
tions of commercial matters and their regular intermissions in the winter 
seasons. This conviction in the minds of many of the foremost men of 
the city, resulted in the organization in i860 of the "Association for the 
Encouragement of Manufactures in the City of BuflFalo.'* While this 
Association did not, perhaps, directly extend the manufactures of the 
city, it did encourage general manufacturing, chiefly through a system 
of extensive advertising of Buffalo as a desirable point for the establish- 
ment of manufacturing enterprises. The association sent circulars to all 
parts of the country containing statements that real estate in the city 
was cheap, living economical, rents low for a city of eighty thousand 
inhabitants, having fifty-two miles of paved streets, forty-eight miles of 
sewerage, two hundred and sixty miles of streets, gas everywhere and 
pure water; that the city was a center for marketing, etc. This thor- 
ough advertising by the association gave an impetus to manufacturing 
in the city, the results of which can scarcely be overestimated and are 
felt down to the present time.* 

Iron Manufacturers. 

The iron interest has always been a prominent one in this city and 
will so continue; ore from the best mines is cheaply transported hither, 

* In i879-'8o, according to the census reports, Buffalo stood as high as eleventh in the country 
in the number tad rank of her manufacturing establishments. Their number is given u x,i37, and 
the value of their products $40,000,000. 

:-i^Vit.r ■'•■■•■.^- •■•■••:■'• 

^. ^. ^l^^^tZ't^- 

Iron Manufacturers. ^39 

while the facilities for obtaining coal are unrivaled. This industry was 
one of the first to feel the stimulus of i860 and the few succeeding years* 
although it reached respectable proportions before that time, and by 1865 
the number of iron-working establishments in the city had reached about 
twenty. Among them were the Union Iron Works, which comprise the 
establishments originally started by Palmer & Wadsworth and Warren, 
Thompson and others; Pratt & Co/s rolling mill and nail works, the 
Shepard Iron Works, Geoi^e W. Tifft, Sons & Co., the Eagle Iron 
Works, the Niagara Steam Forge, the Vulcan Works, the Franklin Steam 
Forge, Farrar, Trefts & Knight, John T. Noye & Co., Jewett & Root, 
George Jones & Son, J. & N. C. Scoville, and others. David Bell had 
then just begun locomotive building. Many of these early iron manufac- 
turing establishments are still in existence, and some ol them have 
attained enormous proportions. To them and others that have since 
been established, further reference may be made. 

George W. Tifft ^ Sons & Co, — This establishment builds steam engines, 
boilers, machinery and architectural iron work. The house was founded 
May 15, 1841, under the name of the Buffalo Steam Engine Works, which 
title was changed to the present one in 1857. The buildings extend 
over about two acres of ground and from one hundred and seventy-five 
to two hundred men are employed. In 1882 Mr. George W. Tifft died ; 
the firm is now composed of John V. Tifft and Charles L. Whiting. 

The Howard Iron Works.— These works were established in 1849, by 
Rufus L. Howard, the present proprietor. The plant covers more than 
an acre of ground. Two hundred and fifty men are employed and the 
capital invested is over $200,000. 

The King Iron Works, — The King Iron Works were established in 
1848, under the name of the Shepard Iron Works, the change to its pres- 
ent form being made in 1871. William J. King, Jr., the present proprie- 
tor, at that time bought out the interest of Sidney Shepard. The works 
now cover an entire block and about two hundred hands are employed. 
Their special line is marine and stationary engines. 

Eagle Iron Works. — This establishment was organized in July, 1853, 
under the name of Eagle Iron Works Company. It was then a joint stock 
company, the stockholders being Sherman S. Jewett, F. H. Root, O. 
FoUett, J. E. Follett and R. Dunbar. The business was begun in the 
same building now occupied, on the corner of Mississippi and Perry 
streets. In February, i860, Robert Dunbar and S. W. Howell bought 
the interest of the other stockholders and conducted the business under 
the firm name of Dunbar & Howell. On the ist of January, 1875, Mr. 
Howell left the firm, and Mr. Dunbar took in his son, George H. Dun- 
bar; Dunbar & Son has been the name of the firm since. They are 
largely engaged in building elevators, manufacturing general machinery, 
making a specialty of Gardner's Patent Three Cylinder Engine, etc. 

240 History of Buffalo. 

DeLaney Forge and Iron Company. — This company was established in 
185 1, by C. D. DeLaney, with a small capital. The works front thirty- 
five feet on Perry street, and are two hundred and thirty feet deep. 
There are at present four partners in the company— C. D. DeLaney, C. 
A. DeLaney, John Slote and Joseph Howard. About one hundred and 
twenty hands are employed. 

Washington Iron Works, — These works were established by the pres- 
ent proprietor, Jacob Ginther, on the site now occupied by them, corner 
of Washington and Chippewa streets. From thirty to forty men are 
employed. In 1882, Mr. Ginther erected a new building next to the old 
one, for the accommodation of the growing business. 

/. & N. C. Scoville, — This establishment is located at 534 Louisiana 
street, and is known as the Buffalo Car Wheel Works. It has been in 
operation since 1853. The lot on whi^h the four buildings stand is two 
hundred by four hundred feet in extent. As indicated above, J. & N.C. 
Scoville are the proprietors. 

George H. Jones' Sons. — In 1848 George Jones, grandfather of the 
present proprietors of these works, established a manufactory on Eagle 
street, near the site of the present city hall ; he subsequently removed to 
Pearl street, near Eagle, and in 1857, to the present location. The plant 
covers an area extending one hundred and seventy-two feet front on the 
Terrace and one hundred and eighty-eight feet in depth. The members 
of the firm are Henry L. Jones, and Frank R. Jones. Bank vaults, stairs, 
railings, etc., are the principal products of these works. 

F. Collignon, — Mr. CoUignon established his brass works in 1844 on 
what was then known as Lake street (now Canal) between Main and Lloyd 
streets. His beginning was small. In 1850, he bought the lot now occu- 
pied by him, and soon after erected the buildings at present standing. 
They cover an area of ninety-six by one hundred and five feet on the 
corner of Ferry and Washington. 

Bingham & Morgan. — This establishment is located on Church, Jack- 
son and Genesee streets. In about the year 1848, R. M. Eddy and R. 
M. Bingham started a small foundry on Church street. During the war 
Mr. Bingham bought Mr. Eddy's interest in the business and took in his 
son. This partnership continued until 1870 when R. M. Bingham 
went out and A. M. Morgan entered into partnership with the son, 
Charles F. Bingham. They now employ about sixty hands. 

George B. Hayes. — This business was founded in 1868, under the firm 
name of DruUard & Hayes, on the present site on Exchange street. The 
firm was then composed of Frank O. Drullard and George B. Hayes. 
In about sixteen years, F. O. Drullard died and his father, Solomon Drul- 
lard, entered the firm in his place. In February, 1883, ^^i too, died, and 
George B. Hayes now has entire control of the business. He employs 
at present one hundred and fifty men, his specialty being cast iron pipes 

Iron Manufacturers. 241 

for gas and water. The works cover about two hundred and sixty feet 

Farrar & Trefts. — Location 54 to 66 Perry street. From the time 
of its foundation in 1864, until 1869, this house was known as Farrar, 
Trefts & Knight. They have sold 5,000 engines of one style in the last 
ten years. The premises cover nearly an acre on both sides of Perry 
street. The members of the firm are Chillion M. Farrar and John Trefts. 
About two hundred and thirty-five men are employed. 

Union Iron Company.— TvfO blast furnaces built about i860, at the 
foot of Hamburg street, where the Union Iron Company are now estab- 
lished, one by Warren & Thompson, and the other by Palmer & Wads- 
worth, were the origin of the above works. In 1863 these two compa- 
nies combined their interests under the name of Palmer & Co., and built 
a rolling mill. In 1866 a stock company was organized called the BuflFalo 
Iron Works, afterwards changed to the Wadsworth Iron Works. In 
1872 the works were purchased by the present proprietors, the Union Iron 
Company. At present these works are virtually discontinued, the prem- 
ises being leased to the Central Bridge Company. Their specialty was 
pig iron, bar iron, plate iron, etc. 

/. W. Ruger & Co.^ Corner Chicago and Perry streets. — This firm are 
manufacturers of bread, cracker and biscuit machinery, etc., and were 
first established in 1850, in Rochester ; they removed to BuflFalo in i860. 
The capital at first was about $300; in 1880 about $80,000; at pres- 
ent, about $125,000. The main building on Chicago and Perry streets is 
125 by 127 feet, three stories high with a basement. About one hundred 
and thirty-five men are now employed. A fitty horse-power boiler and 
thirty-five horse-power engine move the machinery. The members of 
the firm are J. W. Ruger and Augustus Ruger. 

Harris Iron Works. — These works were established in 1868, in a small 
way, in the furnace business. In 1875, ^^' Harris occupied the Vulcan 
Foundry on Water street, in connection with R. R. Cornell, where they 
remained till 1879. ^^^ ^^^ ^^^^ separated and Mr. Harris rented on 
his own account, the foundry portion of the King Iron Works. In 1882 
he built the present building, covering one hundred and thirty feet 
front on Perry street, and three hundred and eighty feet deep. The 
present proprietors of the Harris Iron Works are W. H. Harris and J. 
B. Parker ; the latter gentleman came into the firm in the spring oi 1883. 
About two hundred men are employed. 

One of the most important establishments in BuflFalo, in connection 
with the iron industry, is the Niagara Bridge Works, corner of Niagara 
street and Forest Avenue. These works were established in their present 
location and by the present proprietors, in 1873; their building covers 
six hundred by fifty feet, and from one hundred to three hundred men are 
employed. G. C. Bell and S. J. Fields are the proprietors. 

242 History of Buffalo. 

The Central Bridge Works, at the foot of Hamburg street, and the 
International Bridge Company, 377 Main street, are also extensively 
engaged in this branch of manufacturing. 

While the above list of iron-working establishments does not, of 
course, embrace every establishment in the city, it gives a record of 
the prominent works, and enables the reader to form an intelligent idea 
of the magnitude of the iron industry in Buffalo ; an industry that is 
rapidly extending and destined to be one of vast importance. 

Furniture Manufacturers. 

A. Cutler dr Son, Pearl Street. — The manufacture ot furniture is one 
of the leading industries in Buffalo, and dates back almost to the begin- 
ning of manufacturing in this city. The oldest and one of the largest 
houses in the business in Buffalo, is that of A. Cutler & Son. On the 
5th of September, 1824, Abner Cutler came from near Rochester to 
Black Rock, and began at once to build up a business in cabinet-making. 
On the 7th of September he made his first sale — a breakfast table of his 
own make. On the 25th of September, 1829, he removed to Main street, 
between South Division and Swan streets. After being thrice burned 
out he again moved in 1857, ^o Batavia street, and thence shortly after 
to his present quarters, No. 94 Pearl street. It is said that he has car- 
ried on the business longer than any other person in the entire country. 
He was in the business a short time before he came to Black Rock, in 
Chittenango, Madison county, N. Y. He now, in company with his son, 
Fred. H. Cutler, conducts the business ; they employ about one hundred 

Edwin Sikes & Co., {Buffalo Chair Works).— In 1859, S. D. Sikes, 
brother of the present senior partner in this firm, started a furniture fac- 
tory on the site now occupied by his successors, (500 Clinton street). In 
1861, Edwin Sikes was taken into the business, which was carried on 
under the style of S. D. Sikes & Brother until February, 1875, when the 
present form was adopted. About seventy-five men are now employed and 
the business rests upon an invested capital of about $40,000. E. Sikes, 
Mrs. S. D. Sikes and W. F. Sikes constitute the partnership. 

L. Granacher. — Mr. Granacher began the manufacture of furniture 
alone in 1853, on the site which he now occupies, (215 Genesee street). 
His only partnership since that time was formed with Clinton Faust in 
1880 and was dissolved in 1882. His works cover an area measuring 
eighty by one hundred and twenty feet. He employs about forty-five 
men and* has an invested capital of about $16,000. 

Colie 6r Son — This firm began business in 1866, on Seneca street, 
between Washington and Ellicott. In 1869, they removed to Washing- 
ton street, comer of Hamburg canal. In the fall of 1873, they removed, 
to their present quarters on Exchange street, opposite the Central depot. 


^QM>m^t^ (3.^'Cotlt 


Furniture Manufacturers. 243 

They had from the beginning until 1874, a factory on Genesee street; 
then it was removed to Connecticut street, and again in 1879 to Pearl 
street. They employ about seventy-five hands, and have an invested 
capital of $40,000. The individual members of the firm are Mrs. O. S. 
Colie and George W. Colie. 

Frederick Bensler^ (141 Seneca Street^ — The present proprietor of this 
business, with the assistance of a partner, Andrew Diedrich, founded the 
establishment in 1868, at 145 Swan street In about four years, Mr. 
Bensler took his brother Herman into the firm and Mr. Diedrich retired ; 
the new firm removed to the present place and built the structure now 
occupied by him. It is five stories in height, covers 8,600 square feet and 
cost, with the land on which it stands, $35,000. About fifty men are 
employed and the invested capital is $35,000. 

Schlund & Doll. — This firm began business at their present quarters. 
No. 472 Main street, in 1871. They have a factory corner of Mohawk and 
Pearl streets ; they employ about twenty-five men and the invested cap- 
ital is between $20,000 and $30,000. 

Hersee & Co. — In 1872, Hersee & Co. began their business on their 
present site, Ellicott street, foot of Mohawk. The firm consisted first of 
Thompson Hersee, Jr., William M. Hersee and Jacob Gramlich, the two 
former having previously been of the firm of T. Hersee & Sons. Mr. 
Gramlich was in the employ of the old firm until 1871. T. Hersee, Jr., 
died in November, 1875 ! George Coit was admitted to the business in 
1878, and is still a member. The building occupied is a six story brick 
structure, one hundred feet front by forty feet deep, with a four story 
brick building thirty-two by one hundred feet attached in the rear for a 
factory. They employ from sixty to one hundred hands, and have an 
invested capital of about $75,000. 

Jacob J. WelUr, — The business now carried on at 391 Main Street 
by Jacob J. Weller, was established by Hersee & Timmerman in 1836. 
Mr. Weller became a member of the firm about 1863 or 1864. In 1871 
Messrs. Weller, Brown & Mesmer bought out the concern, and in 1882, 
Mr. Weller took it entirelv into his own hands. 

Guenther & Faust. — In about 1858 John Streicher started the works 
now run by Guenther & Faust. After his death in 1868, the business 
was conducted by bis widow and son until 1878. Then the firm name 
was changed to the Streicher Furniture Company. In 1880 the present 
proprietor came into possession. Their factory on Genesee street, is a 
three story building' fifty by one hundred and fifty feet reaching through 
to Elm street. About thirty men are kept at work. The invested cap- 
ital is represented as $12,000. The individual members of the firm are 
Anthony Guenther and Rudolph Faust. 

The Tifft Furniture Company. — The firm is composed of John V. 
TifiFt, C. L. Whiting, M. A. Plimpton and S. A. Gray ; a large wholesale 
business is carried on at 477 and 479 Washington street. 

244 History of Buffalo. 

Sautr & Hanbach, iS and 20 Ellicott streeL — Adam Sauer came 
from Rochester to Buffalo in 1865, and founded an establishment on 
Washington street for the manufacture of cigar boxes, under the name 
of '' The Adam Sauer Furniture Company/' John C. Hanbach from 
Rochester joined Mr. Sauer in 1866. In 1868 a general furniture factory 
was founded in addition to the cigar box department, and was removed 
to the present site. The building is brick, four stones high, measuring 
about tbirty-six by one hundred and forty-five feet. From forty to forty- 
five men are employed. The invested capital is $25xxxx 

In this industry there were invested in Buffalo in 1880. $578,200; 
the value of the product was $773,091. A great deal of furniture is 
manufactured in the city, in connection with the retail trade, which can- 
not be further referred to here. 

The Leather Industry. 

Of the early history of tanning in Buffalo there are few available 
records, and information on this subject is difficult to acquire except 
through conversation with those pioneers whose memories extend back 
over a period of over half a century or more. 

Gfo. Palmer & Co. — Probably the first tannery in this city was the 
one established by Geo. Palmer ft Co., some time about the year 1820, 
or possibly previous to that. In 1837 there were three tanneries in the 
city — the one just mentioned, the old " City Tannery " (built by Joseph 
Hoyt and purchased subsequently by Rumsey & Howard), which was 
located on Exchange street, opposite the present site of the Central 
Depot, and the Gardiner Tannery in that part of the city known as ^ the 
Hydraulics.*' From that time the trade rapidly developed. 

A. Rumsey & Co. — One of the oldest, as well as one of the best 
known tanning firms in the city is that of A. Rumsey & Co. It 
was founded in the year 1836 by Mr. Aaron Rumsey, now deceased. 
At that time the firm incas Rumsey ft Howard, operating the "City Tan- 
nery. '' In 1840 this partnership was dissolved and subsequently Mr. 
Rumsey's two sons were united with him in the firm of A. Rumsey ft 
Co. In 1844 the tannery near Louisiana street, on the canal, which they 
now occupy, was built. It has several times been enlarged since then. 
The firm make hemlock sole leather exclusively. The city tannery has 
some six hundred vats, and uses slaughter hides ; and one at Hcdland 
run by the same firm has about six hundred vats, and works on dry 
hides. The united capacity of the two yards is placed at about aoo,oou 
sides per year. 

Bush & Howard are also an old firm, their business having been 
established by Myron P. Bush and Geo. Howard in Ihe year 1844. 
Besides the original members, the firm is now composed of J. W. Bush 
and Jas. H. Smith. Their yard in this city tans something like 75,000 

.S^^aAyC^'n/ ^..M!^^/md^e^^ 

■-^?yC^97J^??2 i$. tyu^^-^^ry^x 

The Leather Industry. 245 

sides of hemlock slaughter sole leather per year. All of this is sold in 
the market west of Buffalo. 

Root & A><i/i«^, although operating no tannery in the city, are among 
Buffalo's most prominent leather manufacturers, as the entire product of 
their large tanneries is sold from their warehouse in this city. Their yards 
are located at Olean, N. Y., and Port Allegheny, Pa., and both tan sole 
leather. The tannery at Port Allegheny is one of the largest tanning 
establishments in the country, and has a capacity of seven hundred sides 
of dry sole per day. That at Olean runs on Texas slaughter hides and 
tans some three hundred sides per day. The firm have built a ware- 
house on the corner of Wells and Carroll streets, of brick, one hundred 
and forty-five by one hundred and seventy-five feet, and five stories 
high, which they now occupy. The business of the firm of Root & 
Keating was established in 1864 by Jewett & Shaw. In 1866, Robert 
Keating was admitted, the firm becoming Jewett, Shaw & Keating and 
subsequently, January i, 1878, Francis H. Root entered the firm and the 
present style of Root & Keating was adopted. 

Martin & Co,, in their tannery at Smith's Mills, Chautauqua county, 
tan out from six hundred to nine hnndred sides of sole leather per week, 
which is sold from their warehouse, 103 Main street. They run on dry 
hides. The firm was established in 1863 by Mr. Martin and his two 
sons, one of whom is now dead. 

5. L, Mason & Co,, tan sheepskins and rough and harness leather at 
no Scott Street. They tan about 14,000 sides of rough and harness 
leather annually, and pull, tan and pickle about two hundred dozens of 
sheepskins per week. This tannery was originally run by John Bush & 
Co., and was purchased by S. L. Mason on the death of Mr. Bush, in 
1873. In 1875 his brother was admitted to the firm and the present style 

Moffat Brothers, — This firm was established in 1869 by James and 
Henry C. Moffat, and operate two tSlnneries, one in this city and one at 
Alden, N. Y. All their products are sold from the warehouse, No. 70 
Exchange street. At their yard in Buffalo they tan about 200,000 sheep 
skins per year, while their Alden yard tans about 50,000 sides of upper 
and kip. 

/. F. Schoellkopf's Sons, (Louis, Alfred and John Russ Schoellkopf) 
operate two large tanneries, one of which is located in this city, corner 
of Hudson and Efiier streets, and one at Sheffield, Pa. The tannery 
here has a capacity of about 1,300 sides of sole and 1,200 of harness, 
upper and kip per week from slaughter hides. The business was estab- 
lished about twenty-five years ago by J. F. Schoellkopf. J. F. Schoell- 
kopf A: Co., (J. F. and Alfred Schoellkopf,) also run a large sheepskin 
tannery at the corner of Mississippi and Scott streets, puUmg about two 
hundred dozens sheepskins per day. 

246 History of Buffalo. 

Siegel Brothers xxxn a tannery at Hamburg, whose products are sold 
at their warehouse, No. 82 Main Street. They are tanning about 10,000 
sides of hemlock, dry and slaughter sole per year. 

Laub & Zeller. — This firm at 76 Pearl Street, was established in 
1865 succeeding in that year to the firm of Laub Brothers. Their tan- 
nery in this city contains one hundred and seventy-five liquor vats and 
runs from six hundred to eight hundred sides per week. They make 
principally harness leather, with some kip and calf. 

George Z. Williams runs a tannery at Salamanca, and has a warehouse 
at No. 50 Exchange Street. The business was established in 1863 by the 
firm of Deming, Curtiss & Williams. This tannery runs on hemlock sole 
and tans out over 50,000 sides per year. 

M, Strauss commenced business in Buffalo in 1862. His tannery at 
367 Chicago Street, has a capacity of about 200,000 sheepskins per year. 

Hoffeld & (7/ijj/^ established a tannery at Lancaster, in 1861, but 
did not commence business in Buffalo until 1864. They tan out over 
50,000 sides of hemlock sole per year, running on both dry and slaughter 

M. Sttffaris Sons (Michael F., George L., and Jacob P. Steffan) run a 
tannery at Boston, Erie county, and sell its products at their warehouse, 
813 Main Street, Buffalo. The business was established in 1851 by M. 

Bickford Sr Curtiss beganr the manufacture of belting and hose at 53 
and 55 Exchange Street, in 1867, where they have since carried on the 
business. In 1868 they took into the firm Frederick Deming, who 
remained with them five or six years, since which time Messrs. Bickford 
& Curtiss have continued the business. About twenty hands are employed 
in the establishment ; the individual names of the firm are R. H. Bickford 
and Fred B. Curtiss. 

N, H. Gardner & Co.^ began the manufacture of belting and hose at 
127 and 129 Washington Street, about twenty years ago. In 1874G. D. 
Barr succeeded that firm in the establishment. In the spring of 1879 
the buildings were burned and immediately rebuilt ; in 1881 Mr. Barr 
removed to his present quarters ; he employs about thirty hands. 

The capital invested in Buffalo in the production of leather in 1880 
was $93,000 in curried, and in tanned leather, $1,077,000. The total value 
of the product was a little over $2,000,000. 

Brewing and Malting Interests. 

The business of brewing and malting forms one of the most impor- 
tant interests in Buffalo, as it is also one of the oldest. The reader has 
already learned something of Mr. Baer, the third German settler in the 
city, who gave the Buffalonians of 1827 to 1830 their first taste of home- 
brewed beer. It was only five or six years later when business rivals 

The Brewing and Malting Interest. 247 

sprang up around him at Cold Spring. James McLeisch began brewing 
there as early as 1836; in the year 1833, the Moffat brewery was estab- 
lished on Mohawk and Morgan streets. Since that time the manufacture 
of these light beverages, ale, lager, porter, and like drinks, has grown 
rapidly. Buffalo is a central point in a remarkable barley-growing dis- 
trict, extending far on both the American and the Canadian sides of the 
lakes, while the large German element in the city and vicinity help to 
create a heavy demand for the products of the numerous great brew- 
eries and malt-houses that are now in existence here ; these products 
have a reputation over a wide extent of territory, of which Buffalo 
brewers at large may well be proud. 

The Moffat & Service brewery, corner of Mohawk and Morgan 
streets, is the oldest establishment of the kind in the city. It was founded 
in its present location by James Moffat, in 1833. James Moffat was the 
father of the present senior partner in the brewery. After the founder's 
death, the brewery was leased by his executors to Arthur W. Fox, and 
the business was conducted for a time under the firm name of Fox & 
Williams. Schumaker & Noble subsequently bought out the effects, but 
after about a year, they left and for a few months the concern was idle. 
In 1876 the present proprietors, Henry C. Moffat and William Ser- 
vice, took possession. The works extend about two hundred feet on 
Mohawk by a little more than three hundred on Morgan street. This 
is^the only brewery in Buffalo that brews ale, porter and stout. The 
malt-house run in connection with the brewery, has a capacity of about 
180,000 bushels ; the brewing capacity, as shown by the annual sales, 
will exceed 10,000 barrels. 

McLeisch Brothers, malsters, Main and Ferry streets, (Cold Spring) 
are proprietors of one of the oldest establishments of this character in 
the city, if it does not antedate them all. James McLeisch, the father of 
the present proprietor, started a brewery on a part of the ground now 
occupied by his sons, in the year 1836. He subsequently added a dis- 
tillery; from the beginning he made his own malt. In 1857 Mr. 
McLeisch stopped brewing, and with A. T. Blackman, established a 
malt-house. They were succeeded in 1865 by Mr. McLeisch's three 
sons — A. McLeisch, James McLeisch and C. G. McLeisch. The malting 
capacity of the concern is now about 200,000 bushels annually. The 
buildings extend one hundred and sixty-five feet on Main street, and 
three hundred and fifty feet on Ferry street ; they employ about 
fifty men. 

Another of the older brewing establishments of Buffalo, is that now 
conducted by Joseph L. Haberstro, No. 11 High street. Mr. Haberstro 
came into possession of the brewery in September, 1859, ^7 purchase 
from his father-in-law, Philip Scheu. The origin of the brewery dates 

back to 1849. T^^^ years earlier than that Mr. Scheu had conducted a 


248 History of Buffalo. 

brewery on Main street, just above St. Louis church. He built the 
present structure, or a part of it, in 1849, ^^ stated. When Mr. Haberstro 
took the establishment he added the vaults, ice-houses and a new 
brewery. The buildings now extend from Washington to Main street, 
one hundred and sixty-five by one hundred and nineteen feet ; eleven 
men are employed. Jacob Roos, one of the early German settlers, 
began brewing in the year 1837, on the site now occupied by his son, 
on Hickory street, near Broadway. He finally conducted an exten- 
sive establishment, through repeated additions. The present proprie- 
tor, George Roos, came into possession about 1859. The malt-house 
connected with the brewery, has a capacity of nearly 55,000 bushels 
annually ; the buildings cover three hundred and seventy-one by two 
hundred and eighty-six feet, and forty-seven men are employed. 

The brewing and malting business now coAducted by Mr. Gerhard 
Lang, was founded in 1842, by his father-in-law, Philip Born. After Mr. 
Bom's death, his wife and her brother took the establishment and con- 
ducted it until 1863, when Mr. Lang bought it. The malt-house at 581 
Genesee street, covers about three acres of ground. The brewery on 
the comer of Best and Jefiferson streets, was built in 1876 and is two 
hundred and eighty-five by six hundred feet, standing on a lot of thirty- 
four acres. Mr. Lang employs ten men in the malt-house and fifty in 
the brewery. 

Albert Ziegele & Co., carry on an extensive brewing and malting 
business at 831 to 841 Main street. The origin of this establishment dates 
back to the year 1850, when it was founded by Albert Ziegele. The 
beginning was made in a leased building on Genesee street. In 1855 he 
had completed his present brewery and moved into it. Besides the 
brewery and ice house, the firm own a malt house on the east side of 
Washington street, directly across from the former. Since 1879 Albert 
Ziegele, Sr., has retired from active business, leaving the charge of the 
establishment in the hands of Albert Ziegele, Jr., Herman H. Grau and 
William Ziegele. It is estimated that in 1883 not less than 25,000 bushels 
of barley will be malted, the capacity having been increased from 40,000 
bushels to 80,000. Thirty men are employed. 

In 1877, C. G. Voltz and his brother, J. S. Voltz, present proprietors 
of the International Brewery, entered into partnership and began busi- 
ness asmalsters, leasing for a time a building on Georgia and Sixth streets. 
In 1880 they erected their present buildings, 17 10 to 1714 Niagara street 
The stracture extends sixty by one hundred feet and is six stories high. 
Its malting capacity is 115,000 bushels. C. G. Voltz was engaged in 
the malting business fourteen years prior to the establishment of this 

F. X. Kaltenbach began a brewing business on thejcomer of Walnut 
and Lutheran streets in 1852 ; his malt bouse still remains there. In 1876 

The Brewing and Malting Interest. 249 

he removed his brewery to its present site 438 Eagle street. The build- 
ing is one hundred and fifty by three hundred feet, and about twenty-five 
men are employed. 

In 1853 John Schusler started a brewery on Broadway. In 1859 ^^ 
removed to No. 147 Emslie street, and rebuilt the structure which he 
purchased. He again repaired and enlarged the building in 1873 and a 
third time in 1883. The malt-house adjoining the brewery was erected 
by him in 1873, ^"d his ice-houses in 1875 ; about twenty-five men are 
employed in his business. 

Magnus Beck first began brewing in 1856, on Oak street near Tup- 
per. About 1867 he removed to his present location, 467 North Divi- 
sion street, and erected a new establishment. Mr. Beck died in May, 
1883, since which time the business has been continued in his name by A. 
J. Benzing, as executor. The works extend from Eagle street nearly to 
North Division. The brewery proper is now about two hundred and 
sixty by two hundred and seventy feet, three stories high. The malt- 
house is fifty by one hundred and eighty feet ; the brewing capacity is 
40,000 barrels annually, and forty men are employed. 

J. M. Luippold conducts a brewery employing eight men, at 298 
Emslie street. He began business in 1867, with William Fitch, which 
partnership was dissolved in 1870; the buildings were erected in 1867 
and rebuilt in 1878. 

In 1870, Jacob F. Kuhn began the brewing business at his present 
location, 648 Broadway. He has since enlarged his establishment, 
adding cellars and ice-houses. 

Julius Binz, No. 815 Broadway, began brewing in 1879, ^"^ enjoys 
a growing business. 

In the spring of 1880 the Buffalo Co-Operative Brewing Company, a 
stock organization, was formed, the first president being Jacob Manhard. 
The old Hoeffler brewery was purchased and used about a year, when 
the present buildings, corner of Michigan and High streets, were erec- 
ted; about twenty men are now employed. The present officers of the 
company are Peter Mergenhagen, president; Celestin Baecher, vice- 
president; Andrew Kraus, secretary; Charles Kamper, treasurer, and 
Charles R. Ranch, Charles Hoeffler, John Ebling, Nicholas Meizig, 

George Roche vot began brewing in 1856, on the corner of Spring 
and Cherry streets. In 1871 he built his present brewery at 1033 JeflFer- 
son street. His buildings cover about one and one-half acres and their 
capacity is one hundred barrels daily. 

Jacob Scheu established a brewery on Genesee street as early as 
1837, whence he removed to his present location, 1088 Niagara street, in 
August, 1866. His entire establishment covers about four acres of 
ground and has a capacity of 50,000 barrels annually. 

250 History of Buffalo. 

Other breweries in BufiFalo are those of Christian Weyand, 703 Main 
street, established in 1866; The Clinton Co-Operative Brewing Co., 
10 to 20 Bennett street, and Charles Gerber, 821 Main street. 

Buffalo leads most other similar cities as a malting center. The 
malting capacity of the city is not less than 4,000,000 bushels. The prox- 
imity of the city to the barley fields of Canada and the no less prolific 
section on this side, and its importance as a receiving and distributing 
market, with the peculiar adaptability of the climate for the malting pro- 
cess, sufficiently explain the causes of the magnitude which this interest 
has attained in Buffalo. The largest malting establishment in the city 
is owned and controlled by John B. Manning, the present Mayor of 
Buffalo ; indeed, he claims an undisputed title to the leadership in this 
interest over the world. -He established his business in 1859, beginning 
as a commission malster. In 1863, he bought the malt-house on the Ter- 
race, which still remains in his hands ; its capacity is 80,000 bushels. In 
1873 he built his largest malt house, the ''Frontier Canada Malt 
House," at Black Rock, which he enlarged in 188 1. It is situated at the 
foot of Auburn avenue, next to the canal and river ; it covers three hund- 
red and sixty by sixty feet and is nine stories high ; it has a capacity of 
about 920,000 bushels. In connection with the malt-house are two eleva- 
tors of 175,000 bushels capacity each. About eighty men are employed 
by Mr. Manning. 

Joel Wheeler and his son, A. J. Wheeler, began malting in Buffalo in 
1870, in their present location, 283 Perry street, where they put up a 
building one hundred and sixteen by one hundred and forty-one feet ; 
their malting capacity is about 125,000 bushels. The original proprietors 
still conduct the establishment. 

Schaefer & Brother, 42 and 44 Lloyd street, began dealing in seeds 
and grains in 1863. In 1871 they first confined their business to hand- 
ling barley exclusively and assumed control of a heavy malting interest. 
In 1880 they built a malt house on the corner of Seventh and Jersey 
streets, upon a novel and improved plan. The floors, which are arched, 
are composed of two layers of brick separated by several inches of mortar ; 
this plan preserves an even temperature throughout. Steam pipes are also 
used for the same purpose. The building has a capacity of over 100,000 
bushels per season of eight months; it has four malting floors, a cellar and 
storage floor ; an elevator is connected with it. The firm are Gustavus 
A. and Henry L. Schaefer. 

John Kam built a malt-house on Pratt and Genesee streets in 1869, 
and is now about to become associated with another on Pratt street^ 
which is in course of construction. The total malting capacity of these 
two houses will be about 100,000 bushels ; sixteen men arc employed. 

Fisher Bros. & Co., are malsters at 285 Genesee streit and Fourth 
street, comer of Carolina. The business was founded in i862,l^y George 

The Milling Interest. 251 

Fisher, the present senior member of the firm. In 1865 he associated 
with himself his brother, Jacob P. Fisher, and Phihp Houck. The works 
comprise three brick buildings, covering areas of forty by one hundred and 
thirty, one hundred by one hundred and forty and one hundred and five 
by forty feet respectively, with a total capacity of 200,000 bushels. 
The establishment is known as the " Genesee and City Malt Houses." 

The malting house of White & Crafts, comer of Lake View avenue 
and Jersey street, was founded in 1875, the present proprietors then 
buying the old malt house of Marvin Cline. In 1882 they built a new 
house ad jacent ; the total malting capacity is now 22$fiOO bushels and 
thirty -four men are employed. The firm comprises John White and John 
W. Crafts, the former of whom has been identified with the malting 
interest of Buffalo for thirty-six years. 

Solomon Scheu is proprietor of the Canada malt-house, Hudson, 
comer of Fourth street, where he beg^n business in i860. In 1870, he 
built a brewery in connection 'with his malt-house ; he also has an inter- 
est in a malt-house on St Paul street, and for a number of years has leased 
the Niagara malt-house on Ohio street ; he is also a member of the Lan- 
caster malting firm of Scheu Brothers. The establishment on Hudson 
street covers about one hundred by two hundred feet ; the Niagara 
house sixty by one hundred and fifty feet, and the one on St. Paul street 
fifty by one hundred and eighty feet. From sixty to seventy men are 
employed in the entire business. 

Besides the malt-houses already mentioned, there are in Buffalo sev- 
eral others of considerable importance. C. G. Curtiss, 38 Central Wharf, 
malts from 80,000 to 100,000 bushels annually ; Meidenbauer & Co., 992 
Michigan street ; John O. Meyer, corner of Eagle and Emslie streets ; 
August F. Scheu, 36 St. Paul street ; William W. Sloan, corner of Car- 
roll and Van Rensselaer streets; Henry Diehl, 406 Niagara street, 
are quite largely engaged in the business, with a few others of less 

The census reports of 1880 give the amount of capital invested in the 
production of malt-liquors in Buffalo as $1,859,975, and the value of 
products as $1,636,020.39. 

The Milling Interest. 

The milling interest of Buffalo, which is now a very important indus- 
try, came into existence mainly between 1830 and 1840, at Black Rock, 
where ample water-power existed in the swift current of the river ; that 
was the natural location for factories of any kind in which water-power 
could be made available. Probably the first mills built in or near 
Buffalo, were the old Frontier Mills, which were erected in 1832, by 
Stephen W. Howells, who is still a resident of Black Rock. Then fol- 
lowed, in 1834 or 1835, the Globe Mills (which originally stood nearer 

252 History of Buffalo. 

the canal than at present), and another mill built by Mr. Enos. This lat* 
ter mill was used first for com drying purposes, but was subsequently 
converted into a flouring-mill. These three mills are still standing. The 
Black Rock mill was built between 1834 and 1837, in which latter 
year it burned. The Erie Mills were erected in 1838, and about 
the same time was built the Queen City Mill ; this was followed by the 
erection of the Clinton and the North BufiFalo Mills ; the latter was 
erected in 1857. A steam-mill once stood where the city elevator is now 
located. Mr. O. Bugbee ran it about i844-'45. The Wadsworth Mill, 
on Ohio street, the Buffalo City Mill and the Swan Street Mill are of a 
later date, and the National Mills, of Thornton & Chester, the Urban 
and the Banner Mills, are of comparatively recent construction. 

One of the oldest mills in the county is run by Leonard Dodge and 
Henry W. Dodge, and is located at Williamsville. The former gentle- 
man has owned the mill since 1864. It has a capacity of one hundred 
and fifty barrels a day. The city office is at 72 Main street. 

The heavy milling firm of Thornton & Chester established their 
business about 1850, by the purchase of what are now the Globe Mills, 
from Harry Thompson. They built the National Mills, on Erie street, 
in 1868, and enlarged them in 1881. The Globe Mills were burned in 
December, 1878, but the brand is still used by the firm. The National 
Mills capacity is about seven hundred barrels a day. The n^embers of 
the firm are Thomas Thornton and Thomas Chester. 

In 1856 Jacob F. Schoellkopf began the milhng business which is now 
in his hands. In 1857 he built the North Buffalo Mills at Lower Black 
Rock. In 1870 he bought the Frontier Mills, at Upper Black Rock. 
From 1866 to 1875, in association with Thornton & Chester, he ran the 
North Buffalo Mills, the business being conducted in bis name. He 
joined with his present partner, G. B. Mathews, in 1875, and the firm now 
run both the above mentioned mills. The total capacity of the two is 
from 70,000 to 80,000 barrels annually. Schoellkopf & Mathews also own 
and run a very large mill at Niagara Falls, having a capacity of about 
300,000 barrels annually. 

The Banner Milling Company began business in 1878, operating the 
North Buffalo Mills, owned by J. F. Schoellkopf; they gave up that 
interest in August, 1883, having in the previous year erected the Banner 
Mills, on Ohio street, opposite the Niagara Elevator. The capacity of 
these mills is eight hundred barrels per day. The individual members of 
the firm are J. Esser, H. C. Zimmerman, F. Ogden and H. F. Shuttle- 
worth. Their office is 204 and 206 Main street. 

The Buffalo City Flouring Mills were established as early as 1853. 
They came into possession of H. D. Harvey in 1867, who associated with 
himself Mr. F* J. Henry in 1870. This firm remodelled the mills, chang- 
ing them to the •' new process " and increasing their capacity from two 
hundred to six hundred barrels a day. 

Boots and Shoes — Clothing. 253 

George Urban & Co., established their mills, 324 and 326 Oak street 
in 1846, Mr. Urban conducting the business alone for a time. The firm 
is now composed of G. Urban, G. Urban, Jr., E. G. S. Miller and 
W.C. Miller. 

The Atlas Milling Company, office comer Fourth and Wilkeson 
streets, succeeded the Farina Milling Company April 15, 1883; the latter 
company was established about 1858. The company's capacity is one 
hundred and seventy-five barrels daily. The officers of the company are 
J. L. Ring, president ; Frank Noel, vice-president ; George L. Taylor, 
secretary ; W. H. Beyer, treasurer. 

The Queen City Milling company, 20 Central Wharf, (formerly the 
firm of J. B. Griffin & Co.,) is a corporation that received its charter in 
1880 ; the present officers had run the mills, the Queen City and the Erie 
since 1863. The capacity of the two mills is about six hundred and fifty 
barrels a day. J. B. Griffin is the president of the company, and C. C. 
McDonald is secretary and treasurer; both mills are located at 
Black Rock. 

The capital invested in the milling interests of the city is nearly 
1,000,000, and the products have a value of nearly $2,500,000. 

Boots and Shoes. 

The five years beginning with i860, mark the period when the man- 
ufacture of boots and shoes in Buffalo, in common with most of the other 
manufacturing interests, began to assume the dignity of an independent 
industry. In i860 there were only three wholesale establishments of 
this kind west of Buffalo. This city had, however, since 1853, been the 
home of one factory which lives and prospers to-day, viz : — Forbush & 
Brown, 103 and 105 Main street. This was the first factory of the kind 
in Buffalo. They now employ about one hundred and thirty hands. 
The individual members of the firm are J. G. Forbush and N. Brown. 

J. Blocher & Sons were established in 1863, on the present site over 
64 to 72 Exchange street, one of the present proprietors, John Blocher, 
being the projector. His son, Nelson W. Blocher came into the firm in 
1870. About two hundred hands are kept at work here. 

There are several other boot and shoe manufactories here now, includ- 
ing those of Emsfield & Emig. 50 and 52 Exchange street ; Dorschell & 
Co., 379 EUicott street ; Bommer & Son, corner Swan and Washington ; 
William Kugler, 106 Seneca ; Strootman Bros., 293 Washington ; John 
Strootman & Co., 58 and 60 Pearl street ; B. Taber & Co., 72 and 74 
Lloyd street. 

The Manufacture of Clothing. 

The manufacture of clothing in BufiFalo, to an extent that is worthy 
of mention, dates from about the year i8S4» since which time it has 

254 History of Buffalo. 

developed into a large and profitable interest One of the first estab- 
lishments here in this business, was that of Leopold Warner, Joseph 
Warner and John Warner, who began in 1854, at 41 and 43 Main street. 
In a short time they were forced, by reason of lack of room, to remove 
to Exchange street. In 1878 they again moved, this time to their present 
building, on the northwest comer of Pearl and Swan streets. The firm 
is now composed of John Warner, one of the original members, Lewis 
E. Warner, John R. Warner, Edward Warner, K. Greenberg and S. 
Kempner. About one thousand hands are employed by the firm. 

L. Marcus & Son.- — The present managers of this enterprise, estab- 
lished themselves on Exchange street, in 1873, and first occupied the 
present building, 183 Washington street, in 1878. They employ about 
one hundred and fifty hands. Leopold Marcus and M. M. Marcus com- 
prise the firm membership. 

Altfnan & Company. — The business ot manufacturing clothing now 
conducted under the name of Altman & Company was established on 
Pearl street in 1856, by Jacob Altman. They removed to Washington 
street in 1866, and in the fall of 1883, to the present quarters, in Jewett 
M. Richmond's new building, on the site of the old Franklin House. At 
his death, in 1881, his three sons and a son-in-law, succeeded him, and 
are now the proprietors. They employ about eight hundred bands. The 
firm consists of Isaac Altman, Julius Altman, D. Rosenau and Henry 

The clothing manufacturing business of Brock & Weiner, 64 and 66 
Exchange street, was established in 1865, at 188 and 190 Washington 
street. More than two hundred and fifty employees are now engaged 
by them. The firm moved to their present location in 1880. 

There is a large amount of clothing made in Buffalo, but aside from 
the establishments mentioned, it is chiefly connected with the retail 
clothing trade. 

Miscellaneous Manufactures. 

In addition to the large manufacturing interests which we have 
already described, there are in Bu£Falo numerous single establishments 
devoted to special manuiactures, some of which are of paramount 
importance and deserving of notice as forming a portion of the growing 
industries of the city. 

In the year 1849 John C. Jewett began business on what i& now 31 
Main street, with a store at what is now 271 Main street. In 1864 he erected 
the building now occupied by himself and sons, as manufacturers of 
refrigerators, etc., Nos. 323, 325, 327, 329 and 331 Washington street. In 1871 
the buildings were extended through to EUicott street ; in 1 88 1 they bought 
the lot on the comer of North Division and Ellicott streets. The pres- 
ent firm relations date from 1873 ; the individuals arc John C. Jewett and 
his sons, Edgar B., and Frederick A. Jewett. The products of this 
industry are known throughout the country. 

^/Ci^d^^e^i^ i^^ocy^/r?z^em.^cc^ 

Miscellaneous Manufactures. 255 

The glucose manufacture of Buffalo is one of the most important 
single interests in the city, although its principal development has been 
within a comparatively short period of time. The business was started 
in the spring of 1867, by J. Firmenich,* and Fox & Williams, two sepa- 
rate firms. On the ist of January, 1874, the Buffalo Grape Sugar Com- 
pany succeeded Fox & Williams ; this was changed to the American 
Grape Sugar Company in 1878. In the spring of 1883 these were alLcon- 
solidatcd as the American Glucose Company, with works at Leaven- 
worth, Kansas ; Tippecanoe City, Ohio ; Iowa City, Iowa ; and Peoria, 
Illinois, besides the great establishment in this city ; the works here are 
located partly on Scott street, where they occupy an eight-story build- 
ing, one hundred and sixty by two hundred and ten feet, with two other 
large structures, one at the foot of Court street, corner Fourth, and one 
on Jefferson street. About one thousand men are employed m the works in 
this city. The company's offices are at 19, 21 and 23 West Swan street 
The officers of the company are C. J. Hamlin, President ; J. Firmenich, 
First Vice-President ; Harry Hamlin, Second Vice-President ; William 
Hamlin, Treasurer ; William H. Almy, Secretary. 

There are two very large soap manufactories in Buffalo, the earliest 
one being established by William Lautz in 1853, upon the somewhat lim- 
ited capital of five dollars. Since that small beginning was made, the 
business has steadily grown and the present plant on Hanover street, 
extends one hundred and seventy by one hundred feet ; the building is 
five stories high. There are nine tanks for boiling purposes, each hav- 
ing a capacity of 150,000 pounds and five of the same dimensions 
for tallow. Two hundred employees and six teams are kept at work. 
Three branch offices are connected with the business, one iu Phila- 
delphia, one in New York and one in Chicago. The individual mem- 
bers of the firm are J. A. Lautz, C. Lautz, F. C. M. Lautz and 
Mrs. E. Lautz. The other large soap manufactory is that of R. W. 
Bell & Co., whose business was founded 1865, on State street, succeeding 
John M. Gilbert The works were removed to the present location in 
1875, when the buildings now used were erected. The building is one 
hundred and thirty by one hundred and twenty-four feet and five stories 
high ; the capacity is about 1,000 boxes daily ; one hundred and fifty 
hands are employed. In the manufacture of soap ; one half a million 
dollars are invested in Buffalo. 

It is an interesting fact in connection with the manufactures of. 
Buffalo, that the first billiard table made in the State west of New York 
was made here in 1825, by Jeremiah Staats ; he was then located on 
Niagara street near Main, where he was burned out in 1830. He is now 
located at 32 Staats street. Other billiard table manufacturers here are 
H. W. Kruse, 187 Main street, Adam Braun, 203 Genesee street, and 

* See biognphical sketch in sabtequent pages. 

256 History of Buffalo. 

John Strycher, ii Seneca street. The J. M. Brunswick & Balke Co. 
have an establishment at 597 Main street. 

The firm of Pratt & Letchworth, 52 Terrace, is one of the foremost 
in the country in the manufacture of saddlery hardware. The company 
was formed in 1850 and is composed of P. P. Pratt and Josiah Letchworth. 
They are proprietors of the Buffalo Malleable Iron Works on Tonawanda 
street, where 500 hands are employed, and also manufacture largely in 
the penitentiary, under contract. 

Harvey D. Blakeslee Began the same business in 1879, ^^ Washing- 
ton street, and is now located at 135 and 137 Main street. 

The Buffalo Scale Works is an important manufacturing establish* 
ment, which was founded in i860, as an incorporated company and was 
located where it now is. Edward S. Rich was the first president and 
John R. Linen the first secretary. The business has grown until now 
their products are shipped to all parts of the world and their scales arc 
made to weigh accurately the standards^ of all nations ; the Buffalo 
scales have also been adopted by the United States Government. Fif- 
teen to twenty thousand scales are now made annually. From one 
hundred and fifty to two hundred hands are employed. The present 
officers of the company are John R. Linen, President ; L. Chestnutwood, 
Treasurer ; A. A. Houghton, Secretary ; J. H. Usher, Mechanical Super- 

The Niagara Stamping and Tool Company, 147 Elm street, was 
established in 1879, by the present proprietors, Adam Heinz, Michael J. 
Stark and George J. Munschauer; they employ about sixty hands and 
manufacture tools and machinery for making tin cans and canning outfits, 
and stamp tin and other metals. 

On the ist of September. 1878. the Buffalo Wire Fence Company 
began business on Hanover Street. Two years later the works passed 
to the hands of H. B. Scutt & Co., who located the business on the cor- 
ner of Michigan and Folsom Streets, where it has remained since. 
When the business was commenced, the capacity of the works was only 
2,500 pounds daily ; this has been increased to 25,000 pounds. The firm 
of H. B. Scutt & Co. was dissolved in 1883 ^^^ ^he incorporated com- 
pany was organized, known as the H. B. Scutt Company. About 
twenty-five men are employed and the industry is rapidly growing. B. 
A. Lynde is secretary and treasurer of the company. 

The planing mill and general wood-working industry in Buffalo is 
one of importance and one of the oldest in the city. The business now 
conducted on a very large scale by Lee, Holland & Co., on the comer 
of Court, Wilkeson and Fourth Streets, was established in about the 
year 1832, by P. L. & L. L. Eaton ; it was for years known as the Eaton 
planing mill. James H. Brown, who had been a silent partner from the 
beginning, was given a place in the firm name in 1858, the style being 

^.^"TYyg^iz^c^^z^ ^j:7u?^?z^. 

0yCOCCH2/^^ '^LO'f^ 


Miscellaneous Manufactures. 257 

Eaton, Brown & Co. In 1868 the name was again changed to Clarke, Hol- 
land & Co ; in that year Chas. S. Clarke and Henry Montgomer}' came in. 
The present firm name was assumed in 1881. The members of the firm 
are J. H. Lee, Franklin Lee, N. Holland, H. Montgomery. About two 
hundred men are employed. In the large buildings occupied by the firm 
are also H. J. Comstock, lounge manufacturers, and Weir Bros., stair 
manufacturers, employing together sixty to seventy men. 

The planing mill plant of E. & B. Holmes is located on Michigan 
street and the canal. The firm was established in 1852 and the business 
has grown to vast dimensions, covering the whole field of manufactured 
lumber for building purposes. The members of the firm are E. Holmes,* 

B. Holmes> J. B. Holmes and J. Deitz. The firm of E. & B. Holmes, 
(composed of E. Holmes, B. Holmes* and J. B. Holmes,) also conduct a 
large barrel factory and iron works at 59 Chicago street, from which a 
product of great value is turned out and shipped to all parts of the 

Boiler & Recktenwalt established a planing mill at their present loca- 
tion in 1862. Nicholas Schreiner, now running a similar establishment 
on Ash street, was then a member of the firm. Their location is on the 
comer of Chicago and Carroll streets. The individuals of the firm are 

C. Boiler and N. C. Recktenwalt. Among the other representatives of 
this interest in Buffalo are Burt & Mead, Ganson street, near South 
Michigan; Hoefiler Brothers, 151 Elm street; Joseph Churchyard, 650 
Clinton street ; R. H. Thayer & Co., foot of Church street ; J. R. Mun- 
roe, 260 Bryant street; Jacob Jaeckle, 915 Genesee street; Jacob Has- 
selbeck, 585 to 591 Jefferson street; Chas. J. Hamilton, Erie street, cor- 
ner of Terrace; Fisher & Klause, 920 Seneca street; Jacob Uebelhoer, 
200 Cherry street, and some others of less importance. 

The Clark Manufacturing Company, 41 8 to 428 Niagara street The 
business now conducted under the above name, was begun in Mount 
Pleasant, Iowa, in 1864, by J. K. Clark and his brother, C. B. Clark, the 
former gentleman being still at the head of the establishment. In 1868, 
they came to Buffalo and established themselves in the well-known " Bee 
Hive" building, on the corner of Niagara and Virginia streets. At this 
time E. L. Ferguson and H. R. Clark, brother-in-law and brother of the 
original proprietors, were admitted to the partnership. In 1872 they 
erected the buildings which they now occupy. In 1880, C. B. Clark, by 
reason of ill health, retired from the firm. In March, 1882, he died in 
Philadelphia. The buildings used by this company extend one hun- 
dred and thirty-five feet square ; about one hundred and fifty hands are 
employed. They manufacture builders' hardware. 

Thomas F. Griffin & Sons manufacture car-wheels, etc., on Forest 
avenue, near Niagara street. The business was established in March, 

* See biographical sketch in subsequent pages. 

258 History of Buffalo. 

1883. The firm is composed ot Thomas F. Griffin, Thomas A. Griffin 
and P. A. Griffin. The building covers about six hundred by seventy feet. 

The Pitts Agricultural Works, Fourth street, corner of Carolina, 
were founded in 185 1, on the site still occupied by John A. Pitts, 
who was at that time proprietor of a similar establishment in Rochester. 
In 1859, ^r* Pi^^s di^^ ^^^ ^^^ business was then conducted under the 
management of James Brayley and John B. Pitts, son-in-law and*son 
of the first proprietor. After the death of John B. Pitts in 1866, Mr. 
Brayley remained at the head of the concern until its incorporation in 
IJ877. The incumbent officers are Mrs. M. A. Brayley, president ; Carle- 
tbn Sprague, vice-president; Thomas Sully, secretary and treasurer. 
Portable and traction farm engines, the apron thresher, vibrating thresh- 
ers, etc., are the products of this important industry. John A. Pitts was 
the inventor of the apron thresher, the Pitts mounted horse-power and the 
vibrating threshers. It is stated that they manufacture about three hun- 
dred engines and seven hundred separators annually. The works cover 
an area in three plats, as follows : — office and factory, three hundred and 
thirteen by two hundred and ten feet ; lumber yard, three hundred and thir- 
teen by one hundred and sixty-four feet ; store-house, one hundred by one 
hundred and sixty-four feet. In July, 1879, ^^^ buildings were burned to 
the ground, but new ones were completed on the old foundations before 
the following January. About three hundred men, including salesmen 
and office employees, are kept in pay. 

The Shepard Hardware Company are proprietors of an establishment 
on Forest avenue, Erie cahal and Black Rock harbor, that was founded 
by Mr. John D. Shepard, who also founded the business now known as 
the King Iron Works, in 1845; the King Iron Works were formerly 
known as the Shepard Iron Works. The present works of the Shepard 
Hardware Company were established in 1866, and were first carried on 
at the corner of Chicago and Miami streets. January i, 1883, Mr. Shep- 
ard*s sons and successors moved to their present quarters at the junction 
of Forest avenue and the Erie canal. The buildings cover about three 
and one-half acres of ground, the foundry alone being five hundred and 
fifty feet in length. About two hundred hands are employed. Although 
for years the business had been conducted chiefly by the sons of the pro- 
prietor, viz: Charles G. Shepard and Walter J. Shepard, the father 
remained the nominal head until January, 1878 ; since then the sons have 
been sole proprietors. The products of the establishment are hardware 
specialties of almost every description. 

The firm of J. B. Sweet & Son have been engaged in the manufac- 
ture of children's carriages in this city since 1865 ; it is the only estab- 
lishment of the kind in the city, and is now located at 297, 299 and 301^ 
Niagara street. J. B. Sweet went into the business in 1866, and the 
present firm was formed in 1871 ; they mrere formerly located on the cor^ 

'.^^: eye.-, zyuty^-e- 

Miscellaneous Manufactures. 259 

ner of Scott and Michigan streets, and have occupied their present loca* 
tion for ten years past ; about forty men are employed. 

L. & I. J. White are largely engaged in the manufacture of edge- 
tools and machine knives at 310, 312 and 314 Exchange street ; they came 
here from Munroe, Mich., about 1838, and located first at Black Rock; 
they removed to Ohio street, where they were burned out, locating 
immediately after where they now are. It is an important industry. 

The manufacture of illuminating and lubricating oils is carried on here 
on a large scale by F. S. Pease at 65 and 67 Main street, and 82, 84 and 86 
Washington street. Mr. Pease founded the business in 1848 and has 
made it an important industry. The Buffalo Lubricating Oil Company, 
55 Main street, is also largely interested in this industry. There are sev- 
eral large refineries of illuminating oils. 

There are three or four large starch works in the city. C. Gilbert 
established himself in the business in 1864, near the present site, at 
the foot of Hamilton street, where his son now conducts the works. 
About twenty-five tons are turned out here daily ; the works comprise 
three large buildings, besides commodious out-buildings. Wesp, Lautz 
Bros., & Co., began starch manufacture at Black Rock in 1877 ; in the 
following year they erected their present buildings at the junction of 
Oneida, Bond, Addison and Lord streets. In this factory about one 
hundred and fifty hands are employed. The individual members of the 
firm are, Phillip Wesp, George Wesp, J. Adam Lautz, Fred, C. M. 
Lautz and Martin F. Lautz. The International Starch Works is another 
large establishment which was opened for business in 1877, at Black Rock, 
by the present proprietors. The works comprise several commodious 
buildings and employ fifty hands. Their capacity is four hundred bush- 
els of corn daily. The same firm also run a barrel heading manufactory 
at the same location, which turns out 2,000 headings per day. 

The Riverview Pickle and Vinegar Works, established in 1868, by 
John L. Kimberly, Jr., on Hanover street, is now one of the largest 
concerns of the kind. A few years after it was established, he removed 
to Chicago street and from there in the fall of 1882, to the present loca- 
tion on Fourth street, near Maryland. About 12,000 barrels of vinegar and 
6,ooo]barrels of pickles are made annually, employing ten to fifteen men . 

Carriage and wagon making is extensively carried on in Buffalo, 
more than fifty men and firms being engaged in it in some of its branches. 
Wares unsurpassed for style and workmanship are turned out, rendering 
it one of the^important industries of the place. 

The wall-paper manufactory of M. H. Birge & Sons, which was 
established in 1834, is one of the older and more important industries of 
the city, and the only one of the kind here. 

The wire works of Scheeler & Baer, 145 Main street, were established 
about twenty-five years ago by Mr. Scheeler. They manufacture wire 
cloth largely, employing twenty to twenty-five hands. 

26o History of Buffalo. 

As long ago as 1835, N. Lyman established himself in Buffalo as a 
type-founder, and the business has been made to prosper ever since ; the 
foundry is located at No. 36 West Seneca street. About thirty hands 
are employed ; the members of the firm are W. E., C. B. and P. S. Lyman, 
sons of the founder of the establishment. 

Other manufactures of Buffalo embrace file makers, jewelry manu- 
facturers, trunk makers, pump makers, piano and organ manufacturers, 
marble workers, harness makers, and many other interests of minor 

The general growth of the manufacturing interests of Buffalo will'be 
better understood by the comparison of a few figures from the last census 
(1880), with others taken from the census of i860. In 1880 the sum of 
$341,500 was invested in the manufacture of agricultural implements in 
the city alone; twenty years before but $132400 was invested in the 
same branch in the whole county, and the vahie of the products in the 
latter year was only $379,600, against $423,500 in 1880. In the last men- 
tioned year $295,900 were invested in the manufacture of carriages and 
wagons, in Buffalo, and the product was valued at $410,631 ; in i860 the 
figures representing the same industry were respectively $126,000 and 
199,330. In clothing there were invested in i860 in the entire county, 
only $130,350, turning out stock worth $336,952 ; this industry increased 
in the twenty years so that in 1880 the capital in use in the business in 
the city was $1,000,000 and the products were valued at nearly $3,000,- 
000. In i860, the capital invested in the iron industries of the county 
was placed at $387,800, producing wares valued at $798,605 : while in 
1880 the foundries and machine shops, the iron and steel works and the 
iron forges of the city employed a capital of over $5,000,000 and 
turned out a product worth more than $4,000,000. The glucose 
industry has entirely developed since the earlier year under consideration, 
and turns out an annual product of over $3,000,000. There are invested 
now in the maufacture of drugs and chemicals in the city over $300,000, 
and in patent medicines and compounds over $1,000,000. In i860 the 
capital invested in the county in printing and publishing was $144,650, 
and the product was valued at $275,241. In 1880 the figures were increased 
to $819,000 and the product had a value of $975,022.53, in the city alone. 
In the edge-tool manufactories of the city were invested in 1880 a cap- 
ital of $98,400, with a production of stock valued at $115,100. In the 
manufacture of tobacco, cigars and cigarettes there was invested in the 
city in 1880 the sum ot $196,929, and the product had a value of $464,. 
964.66. These figures have an encouraging look for all who seek the wcl- 
fare of the city. 

The Wholesale Trade of Buffalo. 

Although the city of Buffalo cannot be said to occupy a very promi- 
nent position in respect to its wholesale trade, yet it is true that at the 

The Wholesale Trade. 261 

present time this feature of the city's business is in a growin^^, healthy 
condition. The wholesale trade of the place was developed in a small 
way at an early period. For a number of years between the time when 
the city had reached a stage of growth enabling it to carry on a success* 
ful wholesale business in staple goods* down to the date of railroad con- 
struction in this vicinity, the trade flourished here and much of the capi- 
tal and business energy of the community was turned in the direction of 
wholesaling; between 1830 and 1840, for example, the wholesale business 
of Buffalo in some lines of goods was greater, it is claimed by good 
authority, than it is at the present time. During that period the country 
merchants over a wide extent of territory immediately surrounding the 
city, as well as the early business men of what was then considered the 
far west, and of portions of Canada, looked to Buffalo for a large share of 
their goods. Many of the older business men here to-day will remember 
when every store on Main street below the canal bridge was a wholesale 
establishment. Country retail merchants came to the city from long dis- 
tances with teams, and thus transported their goods home ; at the same 
time shipments of goods to still more distant points by lake were heavy. 
The building of railroads created a change that was temporarily against 
the development of the wholesale business of Buffalo ; connections were 
thus formed with other important interior business centers; country 
merchants who had hitherto purchased their stocks in this city, found 
themselves enabled to reach New York, a privilege they were not slow 
to avail themselves of, all of which served to withdraw an important 
percentage of the wholesale business of Buffalo to other points. The 
effects of this change continued in some degree for ten or fifteen years, 
after which a healthy reaction began and wholesale trade has since 
increased continuously in most lines of goods proportionately with the 
growth of the city. During the past ten or twelve years, the develop- 
ment in this direction has been most encouraging. 

In the foregoing pages devoted to the manufacturing interests of the 
city, much has been said having a bearing upon the wholesale trade of 
Buffalo, since the products of many large manufactories must be sold at 
wholesale by the proprietors who produce them ; therefore, what follows 
should not be accepted as representing the entire wholesale interest of 
the city ; there are, moreover, hundreds of thousands of dollars in goods 
sold here annually at wholesale, by retailers, which cannot manifestly 
be noted in this work, the purpose being merely to refer to the inception 
and growth of some of the leading houses in different lines. 

The wholesale trade in drugs and medicines in Buffalo, although 
not one of the heaviest interests, is still one of the oldest in which a job- 
bing business was developed here. In the City Directory of 1832, we 
find the advertisement of Williams & Co., dealers in American and 
imported drugs, medicines, groceries, etc. ; their location was " No. i 

262 History of Buffalo. 

Cheapside." This firm undoubtedly sold drugs at wholesale, but not in 
very large quantities. Williams & Co. had a drug store and sold at 
wholesale on the southeast corner of Main and Seneca streets, as early 
as 1829, Robert HoUister being a member of the firm. In 1835, Mr. Hoi- 
lister went into the business for himself, on the southwest corner of the 
same streets, Mr. Williams continuing at the old location. In 1840, 
William Laverack engaged in the business with Mr. Hollister ; this firm 
continued until 1864, when Mr. Hollister retired from it;. Since that 
date the firm has been William Laverack & Co. ; it is now composed of 
William Laverack and George Laverack ; their location is 230 Washing- 
ton street. The senior member of this firm and William Coleman are 
the oldest druggists now in business in Buffalo. Mr. Coleman has been 
in the trade for fifty years ; he succeeded his father, who had a store on 
the corner of Main and Swan streets, where the United States Express 
office is now located; he afterwards moved to the northeast corner. 
The firm is now Coleman & Chapin, their location being No. 16 Swan 
street. Powell & Plimpton do an extensive business in jobbing drugs, 
in connection with their wholesale grocery business ; they are located at 
Nos.497 to 501 Washington street. Harries & Bullymore began whole- 
saling drugs and medicines in April, 1882. On September 1, 1883, Mr. 
Bullymore retired and the business is now conducted by Oscar L. Har- 
ries at No. 263 Washington street. Lyman & Jeffrey, 311 Main street, 
wholesale in connection with their retail establishment, and doubtless 
other retailers do so to some extent. 

The jobbing trade of the city in dry goods (strictly) is almost entirely 
confined to three or four firms and is generally carried on in connection 
with a large retail business. It had not reached a very important posi- 
tion until as late as 1866 or 1867 ; since 1870 it has developed rapidly. The 
firm of Barnes, Bancroft & Co., 260 to 268 Main street, is one of the 
largest wholesale houses in the city in dry goods. The firm is descended 
through several changes from one of the oldest dry goods establishments 
in Buffalo, and is now composed of J. C. Barnes, William Hengerer, J. 
K. Bancroft, J. C. Nagel and C. O. Howard. The firm own the splendid 
building which they occupy, extending from Main to Pearl street ; their 
trade has reached three million dollars a year. 

The dry goods house of Adam, Meldrum ft Anderson, was founded 
in 1867, by R. B. Adam and Alexander Meldrum ; in 1875 William Ander- 
son became interested in the business. The house does a heavy whole- 
sale trade in connection with their retail business, all reaching $3,000,000 

J. N. Adam ft Co., 292 to 298 Main street, and 16 to 22 Erie street, is 
composed of J. N. Adam, W. Paterson and W. H. Hotchldss. They do 
a large wholesale business, and began here in October, 1881, coming 
from New Haven, where a branch establishment is still conducted. 

The Wholesale Trade. 263 

While by far the larger portion of the dry goods jobbing trade of the 
city is in the hands of the three establishments to which we have 
referred, there are many other firms who wholesale to some extent in 
lines of goods that might, perhaps, be classed as dry goods, such as 
furnishing goods and the like. 

Closely related to this line of business is the sale of fancy goods and 
notions. The oldest house in this business and one of the oldest jobbing 
houses of any kind in the city, is that of S. O. Bamum, Son & Co., 265 
and 267 Main street. The house was founded by S. O. Bamum, in the 
year 1845. Mr. Bamum subsequently took into the firm his son, Theo- 
dore D. Barnum and Edward J. Chatfield. The business has developed 
from a small retail and wholesale trade, until it now embraces the 
whole field of foreign and domestic fancy goods, and what are termed 
"notions." The establishment occupies six floors, two hundred by 
thirty-one feet. 

Wahl, Ansteth & Snaith, 332, 334and 336 Washington street, though 
established in 1882, occupy a prominent position in jobbing fancy goods 
and notions. Besides these there are a large number of individuals and 
firms engaged in this line, most of which depend mainly upon their 
retail trade, but nearly all of whom wholesale to a limited extent ; it is, 
of course, unnecessary to make further reference to such here. 

Some idea of the wholesale iron and hardware trade has already 
been conveyed in what has been said of the iron manufacturing indus- 
tries of the city. The wholesale trade in hardware in its many different 
forms, is distributed through the hands of a large number of dealers, 
nearly all of whom do a retail business also, and many of whom depend 
mainly upon that feature ot their business. The firm, of Pratt & Co., is 
one of the oldest as well as one of the strongest in Buffalo engaged in 
the sale of iron and general hardware. It was formed in 1842, being 
then composed of S. F. Pratt, Pascal P. Pratt and E. P. Beals. The 
founder of the house was the late S. F. Pratt, who began business here 
in 1828. After the formation of the firm of Pratt & Co., in 1842, no 
change occurred in its composition until 1880, when S. F. Pratt died and 
his interest was absorbed by the remaining partners. The firm was 
largely engaged in the manufacture of iron until 1879, since which time 
their energies have been devoted to the sale of merchant iron and gen- 
eral hardware ; their business has reached $1,500,000 in a year. 

In the year 18 18 a hardware store was kept on the comer of Main 
and Swan streets, by G. & T. Weed, in the same location now occupied 
by Weed & Co., of which firm Hobart Weed is the senior. They do a 
large wholesale trade in general hardware. 

Charles E. Walbridge conducts a large jobbing business in hardware 
and stoves at 317 and 319 Washington street; he established himself in 
1869 on Main street below Seneca, and removed to 297, 299 and 301 


264 History of Buffalo. 

Washington street In the spring of 1879 ^he building now occupied by 
the business was finished and taken. 

In wholesaling iron, E. L. Hedstroro, White Building; G. R. Wilson 
& Co., 12 Sencca'street ; Palen & Bums, 229 Washington street; A. J. 
Packard, 200 Washington street ; Kish & Co., 156 Washington street; W. 
H. H. Newman, 76 Main street; A. Ormsby, 24 West Eagle street, and 
a few others control the trade in Buffalo. 

In a city like Buffalo the wholesale trade in groceries must always 
be large ; there are fourteen or fifteen houses in this branch of trade here 
which are entitled to the distinction of wholesale establishments, while 
there are undoubtedly scores more that do something in this direction. 
One of the oldest wholesale grocery houses in the city is that of the 
Fuchs Brothers, 502 to 506 Main street, which was established in 1849; 
they were first located at 250 Genesee street. The firm is composed of 
A. and J. Fuchs. In addition to their trade in groceries the firm also 
import liquors and wines which they wholesale, and carry on a large 
cigar manufactory. Since the establishment of this house, and even 
earlier than that, the grocery and provision trade of the city has steadily 
grown to its present important position. 

Philip Becker began wholesale trade in groceries at 390 Main street, 
in 1854; about the year 1858 he took in a partner, Mr. Geo. Goetz, and 
the firm has since been Philip Becker ft Co. ; they do a large trade at 
468 Main street. 

The wholesale grocery house of Miller, Greiner ft Co. was founded 
in 1834, by the present senior member of the firm. This is a prominent 
establishment ; the firm is composed of Chas. Greiner, A. D. A. Miller, 
A. C. Miller, J. Greiner and C. Greiner. Their location is 341 to 347 
Washington street. 

James M. Henderson began the grocery business at wholesale in 
1868 ; he is now located at 102 Seneca street. 

The house of Smith ft Weber. 96 Seneca street, was established by 
Smith ft Lapham in 1863 at the corner of Seneca & Michigan streets; 
they remained together until 1880. The firm is now composed of Avery 
L. Smith and John B. Weber. 

Powell ft Plimpton do a large wholesale grocery trade at 297 to 301 
Washington street; as do Wm. Laverack ft Co., 230 Washington street. 
Other dealers are Keller & Boiler, 475 Main street, Granger ft Co., 86 
Seneca street, John W. Lewis ft Co.. 321 Washington street, Adam 
Boeckel, 685 Clinton street, Chas. E. Selkirk, 69 Seneca street. There 
are, of course, many other grocers who make wholesaling a portion of 
their business, to all of whom it is impossible to refer in this connection. 
The wholesale trade in boots and shoes is principally in the hands 
of four or five dealers here:— Wm. H. Walker, O. P. Ramsdell, Sweet 
& Co., Taber, Hogan ft Co., Alfred B. Chapin and T. H. ft G. W. 

C/Aytcn. <^ K^Uz^vn^/^/C' 


The Wholesale Trade. 265 

Graves. Th© manufacturers, who sell the products of their own facto- 
ries at wholesale, have been elsewhere referred to. The firm of O. P. 
Ramsdell, Sweet & Co., is the successor of the business formerly car- 
ried on by Mr. Ramsdell who was first located on Main street, the sec- 
ond door above Weed & Co.'s hardware store. W. H. Walker, who 
now conducts a very large wholesale trade at Nos. 210 and 212 Main 
street, was a clerk in Mr. Ramsdell's store, and was afterwards his part- 
ner for about twenty-five years. In 1876 the firm dissolved and |Mr. 
Walker began business for himself. The firm of O. P. Ramsdell, Sweet 
& Co., is now located at Nos. 215 Washington street, and is comi>osed 
of O. P. Ramsdell, T. T. Ramsdell, Wm. C. Sweet, Geo. W. Sweet, Sid- 
ney M. Sweet. 

Robert Forsyth, 63 Seneca street, established in 1853, does consid- 
erable wholesale trade and Alfred B. Chapin, 47 Exchange street, began 
jobbing boots and shoes in June, 1883. 

The wholesale paper warehouse of Young, Lockwood & Co., was 
started in 1839 ^7 Francis Young, brother of C. E. Young, whose name 
appears at the head of the present firm name. In 1840 C. E. Young 
joined his partner and continued the business until his death in Septem- 
ber, 1882. The present proprietorship was begun in 1872, though John 
A. Lockwood 's connection with the business dates back as far as 1859. 
John C. Adams entered the firm in 1872. The location of the house has 
always been within a block of the present establishment, 209 Main 
street, where they have been since i860. 

The Courier Company is also prominent m the wholesale paper 
trade. This company was organized January ist., 1869, with the follow- 
ing oflftcers: Joseph Warren, president; James M. Johnson, vice- 
president; Milo Stevens, secretary and treasurer. The present officers 
and directors are: Chas. W. M'Cune, president and treasurer; 
Lucius N. Bangs, vice-president ; James Tillinghast, secretary. Direc- 
tors (in addition to the above) Henry Martin and Geo. Bleistine. The 
management of the company's affairs is entirely in the hands of Mr. 
M'Cune. The company is proprietor of the Daily Courier, the Evening 
Republic, and the Weekly Courier. In addition to this business every- 
thing known to the art of printing, except steel engraving, is done by 
the company, embracing the largest show-printing establishment in the 
world. Their wholesale trade in paper stock of all kinds is very large. 
About six hundred men are employed in all departments of the estab- 
lishment, and three large buildings, all six stories in height, are occupied 
by the company. 

In this connection it is proper to mention the large lithographing, 
engraving and printing establishments of Gies & Co., 338 and 340 Wash- 
ington street, Clay & Richmond, 24 Swan street, and Cosack & Co., 
206 to 210 Exchange street. These are all houses of National reputa- 
tion, doing the finest work known in the art. 

266 History of Buffalo. 

The wholesale trade in crockery is an important interest in BufiFalo 
though it is confined to a very limited number of establishments. By far 
the most prominent house in the business here, and one of the largest in 
the State, is that of W. H. Glenny, Sons & Co., who occupy one of the 
finest business blocks in Buffalo, Nos. 253, 255 and 257 Main street, and a 
large warehouse on Pearl street. This house was founded by W. H. 
Glenny * in 1840, before which time there was very little wholesale trade ' 
in crockery in the city. The firm was changed to its present style in 
1865, the individual members being W. H. Glenny, Bryant B. Glenny, 
John C. Glenny and Irwin R. Brayton. Their Main and Washing^n 
street establishment is one of the most conspicuous and successful busi- 
ness houses in Buffalo. 

Matthew O'Neil, 270 and 272 Main street, carries on a large wholesale 
trade in crockery ; his business was established in 1862. George E. 
Newman, 444 Main street, and E. S. Ferland, 407 Main street, are also 
engaged in this line. 

The wholesale trade of the city in tobacco and cigars is large as is 
also the manufacture of these goods; but the interest is distributed 
among so many different hands, especially the manufacture of cigars, that 
detailed reference to them is impossible. The wholesale trade is large- 
ly in the hands of ten or twelve dealers, prominent among whom are 
Henry Breitweiser & Bro., 454 Seneca street who began the manufac- 
ture of cigars in 1862 ; the firm of Fuchs Brothers, to whom reference 
has already been made in connection with their other business: Granger 
& Co., 86 Seneca street ; W. E. Geyer, 198 Pearl street ; Robbins & 
EUicott, 178 Seneca street; Upper &. Donavan 92 Commercial street; 
Frederick Riehl, 166 Seneca street ; George McLeod, 75 Seneca street, 
and others. 

The manufacture of and wholesale trade in confectionery is a large 
interest in Quffalo and dates back to 1845, when James Heth was the 
only manufacturer of any importance here ; he was located on Com- 
mercial street, near the liberty pole. John Benson began candy making 
about 1849 on Main street, opposite the liberty pole. In those days, and 
for some time after, only the common kinds of confectionery were made 
here. In Benson's employ at an early day was a young man named Henry 
Heame, who, when he had mastered all the details of the business, 
started for himself in 1864. He first located in the Tifft block; from 
there he removed to Seneca street, opposite the old Franklin House, and 
in 1869 built the structure in which he now carries on a large business at 
no Seneca street; he was the first to employ steam in confectionery 
manufacture in the city. 

The firm of Sibley & Holmwood began manufacturing confection- 
ery on a large scale at 117 and 119 Seneca street, in 1873 ; they employ 

• See biognphicml sketch of the late W. H. Glenny in tubtequent pages. 

The Wholesale Trade. 267 

steam. James Lutted and O. Gimmer manufactured confectionery as 
early as 1856. The firm subsequently dissolved and Mr. Lutted now 
carries on the business at 301 Main street. 

The firm of Barnes & Swift, 78 Seneca street, do a wholesale trade 
in confectionery. The firm was formerly Menker & Barnes. H. A. 
Menker withdrew from it and established himself in the same trade at 
No. 565 Main street. In January, 1883, his brother came into the busi- 
ness, and the firm is now H. A. & J. C. Menker. E. Menker, Son & Co., 
also carry on the manufacture of confectionery in connection with a job- 
bing business at 450 Main street. This comprises most of the wholesale 
business of the city in this line except what is done in a small way by 
the principal retail dealers. 

The wholesale liquor interest of Buffalo is an important one and is 
mainly the growth of the past twenty years. It is chiefly distributed 
through the hands of about a dozen leading dealers, though there are 
more than fifty who sell liquors or wines at wholesale to some extent, 
many of them in connection with the wholesale grocery or drug trade ; 
some of these have already been mentioned. There is not now very 
much distilling of spirits in the city outside of the establishment of E. N. 
Cook & Co., 32 Main street. Their business was begun in the spring ot 
1876 by Gustav Fleischman, now a member of the firm ; the distillery is 
on Spring street near Broadway. The firm was made E. N. Cook & Co., 
in 1879 2ind the Main street store opened. The distillery formerly man- 
aged by G. & T. Farthing was purchased, increasing the capacity from 
four hundred bushels to one thousand two hundred bushels per day. 
The house makes a specialty of straight rye whiskies and g^n. Thomas 
Clark,* (deceased,) founded the Red Jacket distillery in 1848 and began 
the manufacture of alcohol and cologne spirits. The office and rectify- 
ing department of this establishment are on the comer of Washington 
and Perry streets ; the distillery, malt-house, store-house, etc., are on 
Seneca street. In distilling, rectifying and compounding liquors are also 
engaged Jay Pettibone & Co., 50 Lloyd street ; Henry T. Gillett & Sonst 
26 Lloyd street, and one or two others. Among the principal whole- 
salers of liquors are John R. Fero, 7 and 9 Quay street; Charles F. 
Nagel & Co., 10 Pearl street, established in 1864, — this firm is now com- 
posed of Charles F. Nagel, Jacob Dilcher and Louis Nagel ; Charles L. 
Abel, 16 Ohio street, one of the oldest houses in the city in this business ; 
A. T. Kerr& Co., 99 Seneca street, established in 1859 1 Charles Person, 
392 Elm street; E. C. Cochrane, 474 Main street, established in 1863; 
August Baetzhold, 567 to 571 Michigan street; John C. Eagan, 81 Sen- 
eca street; S. F. Eagan, 133 Seneca street and others. 

The wholesale hat, cap and fur trade of Buffalo is in the hands of 
a half dozen dealers and dates back to 1830 or earlier. We find in the 

*See biographicml sketch in later page. 

268 History of Buffalo. 

city directory of 1832, the announcement of Tweedy & Ketchum, who 
have "opened a hat store at No. 177 Main street, three doors below the 
BufiFalo House, where they will ofiFer a general assortment of hats of their 
own manufacture at wholesale and retail." Mr. Tweedy is still in the 
same business in the city, at 217 Main street. His partner in the first 
store was Lewis Ketchum. C. Georger began the business on Genesee 
street, in 1845 ; since 1866 this firm has been C. & F. Georger; their 
location is now 508 Main street. The house of Chase & Comstock is 
descended from one of the oldest firms in this line of business in the city ; 
the firm is now composed of John L. Chase and George W. Comstock ; 
they are located at 249 Main street. The business of Stafford, Faul & Co., 
271 Main street, was established by Sirret & Stafford in 1871 and was 
changed to its present form in 1878. The firm is now comi>osed of R. 
Stafford, C. Faul and W. J. Mann. J. E. Pergtold and L. Israel also do 
some wholesale trade in this line ; the former is at 293 Main street, and 
the latter at 26 Union street. 

Buffalo Hotels. 

The business interests of the city would not be adequately described 
without some reference to the hotels, which are intimately associated 
with the prosperity of the place. There are about forty hotels of all kinds 
in the city, among them being several that compare favorably in all re- 
spects with the best in the country, in cities the size of Buffalo. Such are 
the Tifft House, the Genesee, the Mansion House and others. The Tifft 
House was erected in 1863, by the late George W. Tifft, and has been 
under the proprietorship of Messrs. E. D. Tuthill & Son since 1873. The 
Mansion House has often been referred to in this work as the successor of 
Landon's Tavern, one of the oldest hostelries in the city. It has recently 
been greatly enlarged and has been under the management of R. F. 
Stafford and H. P. Whitaker since March ist, 1882. " The Genesee" was 
built by Dr. Charles Cary and was finished and opened in the fall of 1882. 
The proprietors are Harris & Losekam, who also conduct the Clarendon 
Hotel, at Saratoga Springs. The Genesee is one of the largest and best 
appointed hotels in Western New York : it is kept on both the European 
and American plans. 

The Continental Hotel was first opened about 1850, under the name 
of the Wadsworth House. The part known as the Exchange Hotel was 
burned and rebuilt in the spring of 1867, when it was opened as the Con- 
tinental. The present proprietor of the house took it in January, 1874. 

The Broezel House was built by John Broezel in 1875 who has con- 
• ducted It, either alone or with his son, John Broezel, Jr., since. 

Among the more prominent other public houses are the United 
States Hotel on the Terrace ; the Bonney House, corner of Washington 
and Carroll streets; the National Hotel, opposite the Central depot; 
Graener's Hotel, 20 East Huron street. 

^ ^-^ f-^ c/^ ^-^ ^5^ 


Y^^ -'/z;^^ 


The Insurance Interest. 269 



Magnitude of the Insmanoe Business — The First Company in Boffalo — Its Officers and Changes — 
Some of iU First Policies — The '* Mutual Insurance Company of Bu£falo " — The Second 
Local Company — The *' Western Insurance Company of Buffalo" — Companies Organised 
in Buffalo and now in ]£zistence — The German Insurance Compuiy — Its Unqualified Suc- 
cess — Its Magnificent Building — The '* Union Fire Insurance Company of Buffalo " —The 
"Erie County Mutual Insurance Company" — The "Buffalo Insurance Company" — Gen- 
eral Insurance Interests of the City. 

THE business of insurance of property against destruction by the 
elements, forms one of the most gigantic financial interests in the 
country. From almost the first settlement of Buffalo, after the 
burning of the village in i8i3-'i4, down to the present time, this great 
interest has been honorably and efficiently represented in the city. 

In the year 18 19, the Legislature of the State granted a charter to 
the Western Insurance Company of the village of Buffalo, for fire and 
marine insurance. Owing to the stringency in all financial matters dur- 
ing that and the few succeeding years, nothing was done under this 
charter until 1825, when Jacob Barker, of the city of New York, pur- 
chased the charter and opened the first insurance office in Buffalo. 
Isaac S. Smith was the first secretary of the company, and Captain Will- 
iam P. Miller was first president. In April, 1827, Mr. Smith resigned 
the office of secretary, and Lewis F. Allen,* who now resides in the city, 
came on from New York city and accepted the position. In 1828, Cap- 
tain Miller also resigned the presidency, and Charles Townsend was 
elected to the office. The capital of this company was $100,000, and it 
did a good business during its existence, considering the size of the 
place. The charter of this company expired in 1830 and its affairs were 
wound up. 

In the legislative session of the winter of 1 829-* 30, was granted a 
charter which was prepared by Lewis F. Allen, for The Buffalo Fire 
and Marine Insurance Company, with a capital of $100,000. This 
company was incorporated April i, 1830. Charles Townsend was made 
its president. The capital stock was mostly taken by the citizens of 

The first policy issued by this company was upon the furniture of 
William Ruxton, for $500 ; its cost to him for one year was $4.25. Other 
policies followed to Manly Colton, on a two-story house on Main street ; 
on a bam on the comer of Pearl and Tupper streets, to Wray S. Little- 
field ; to Seth Grosvenor, on a two-story dwelling occupied by S. K. 

* See biographical sketch in sabseqaent pages. 

270 History of Buffalo. 

Grosvenor, on the west side of Pearl street ; to William Ketcbum, on a 
two-story house on the north side of Seneca street ; to William Ketchum 
& Co., on a stock of hats and caps in a store on Main street ; to Bryant 
Bur well, on a two-story house on the west side of Pearl street, '' near the 
Episcopal church ; " to Nathaniel Wilgus, on a two-story dwelling on the 
east side of Washington street, near the comer of Eagle street; to 
Horatio Shumway, Simeon Francis, Guy H. Goodrich, Pierre A. Bar-- 
ker, Russell H. Heywood, on cargoes and vessels. 

R. H. Heywood and Horatio Shumway were presidents of this com- 
pany at difiPerent periods, and Lucius Storrs was its secretary for a 
number of years. A large business was done and its losses were always 
paid promptly and satisfactorily. In 1844 an efiPort was made to engratt 
upon the stock plan the mutual insurance principle ; this e£Fort failed of 
success and other companies, vigorously and successfully managed, were 
organized, which came into direct competition with the BufiPalo Insur- 
ance Company. It closed business in April, 1849, having ceased marine 
insurance the previous year. 

In the year 1842, Lewis F. Allen, who appears to have been chiefly 
instrumental in the formation of the early insurance companies of the 
city, obtained a charter for the Mutual Insurance Company of Buffalo. 
G. B. Rich was made president of the company, and Walter Joy, vice- 
president; Oliver Lee was given the office of treasurer, while the 
secretaryship was tendered to Mr. Allen ; but he declined it and Samuel 
T. Atwater accepted the position. The trustees were Philo Durfee, 
Heman B. Potter, Rufus C. Palmer, E. G. Spaulding, James C. Evans, 
Walter Joy, S. S. Jewett, O. G. Steele, Samuel W. Hawes, Gains B. 
Rich, John D. Shepard, S. F. Pratt, Jason Sexton, Thomas J. Dudley, 
William A. Bird, Ralph Plumb, Henry M. Kinne, George Coit, A. R. 
Cobb, Robert Hollister, Harry B. Ransom, Harry Thompson, Richard 
L. Allen and Carlos Emmons. 

This company was organized without capital ; the books were to be 
opened for business and when approved applications for insurance were 
received to the amount of $100,000, the organization was to be perfected. 
Applications on hulls of vessels were promptly made for the stipulated 
amount, and the company was accordingly organized. The first twelve 
policies issued were to John Aublett, E. G. Spaulding (2), Gains B. Rich, 
Henry Wells, Robert Hatfield, Thomas M. Foote, Philo Durfee, Smed- 
ley & Marcy, Baker & Pease, Judson Harmon, O. G. Steele. 

Some doubt having been expressed as to the company being able to 
pay possible losses, eight of the directors loaned their notes for $5,000 
each, secured by bond and mortgage, at five per cent, interest This 
indebtedness was cancelled by payment of the notes, with five per cent, 
interest the first year, and three per cent, the two following years. The 
company was very successful and enjoyed a high reputation in all of the 
towns along the lakes for prompt payment and fair dealing. 

Local Insurance Companies. 271 

Mr. Rich resigned the presidency of this company in 1847 and A. 
A. Eustaphieve took the office. He resigned in the spring of 1863, and 
was succeeded by J. S. Weatherly. This company changed its character 
to a stock company and its name to the Buffalo Fire and Marine Insur- 
ance Company. It suspended business through heavy losses incurred in 
the Chicago fire of 1871. 

In April, 1842, a charter similar to that of the Mutual Insurance Com- 
pany of Buffalo, was granted to the Atlantic Mutual Insurance Company 
of New York City. It is mentioned here from the fact that it immediately 
solicited business in Buffalo and other interior cities, and was immensely 
successful. Its career has been referred to by excellent authority as 
" unparalleled in marine underwriting in the world." 

The next local insurance company was the Farmers* Mutual Insur- 
ance Company of Erie county. This company was incorporated May 
14, 1845 ; Thomas C. Love was the first president, and Richard L. Allen, 
secretary. The company did a comparatively small, but a safe business. 

The Merchants' Mutual Insurance Company was organized under 
the State law in i849-'5o, beginning business in the latter year. It was 
prosperous for a short period, but suffered heavy losses and finally sus- 

The Western Insurance Company of Buffalo was organized under 
the general law in 1862. Its corporators were : John L. Kimberly, Henry 
Martin, A. J. Rich, Geo. C. White. H. E. Howard, P. L. Sternberg, 
Wm. O. Brown, Oscar Cobb, John G. Deshler, Jason Parker, Thomas 
Clark, Dean Richmond, Elijah P. Williams, Wm. G. Fargo, David N. 
Tuttle and S. V. R. Watson. Dean Richmond was made president 
of the company, Gibson T. Williams, vice-president, and Joseph String- 
ham, secretary. The capital of the company was placed at $150,000, 
which was subsequently increased to $200,000 and again to 300,000. 
This was probably the most successful and strongest insurance com- 
pany, all things considered, that was ever organized in Buffalo. The 
premium receipts grew from 50,000 in 1862, to 563,000 in 1868. During 
its operations of nine years, it received nearly $4,000,000, while it paid 
out for losses and expenses about $3,000,000. It did a very large fire 
and inland marine business. 

The Buffalo City Insurance Company began business on the ist of 
May, 1867. The officers of the company were: Wm. G. Fargo, Presi- 
dent ; A. Reynolds, Vice-President ; Henry T. Smith, Secretary, with a 
board of twenty-eight directors. The capital of the company was 
$200,000, which was afterwards increased to $300,000. The business of 
this institution seems to have been largely under the control of Mr. 
Reynolds during the first four years and to have been successfully man- 
aged. During that period forty-five per cent, of the capital was paid 
in dividends and it was then a very prosperous organization. Mr. Rey- 

272 History of Buffalo. 

nolds left the company in the spring of 1871 ; there was then a surplus 
of about $100,000. Mr. P. S. Marsh was elected in place of Mr, Rey- 
nolds, and in the fall of 1871, owing chiefly to heavy losses in the great 
Chicago fire, the . company suspended. The first policy issued by the 
BufiFalo City Insurance Company, was for $5,000, on the Central Presby- 
terian church ; it was dated May i, 1867. 

There are four insurance companies now doing business in Buffalo 
which were organized here, all of which have had successful and hon- 
orable careers. The Buffalo German Insurance Company is one of the 
most successful institutions of the kind in the whole country. It was 
chartered and incorporated on the 15th of February, 1867, with $100,- 
000 capital. The first officers of the company were : E. G. Grey, Presi- 
dent ; Philip Becker, Vice-President ; Alexander Martin, Secretary. 
The first board of directors were Philip Becker, E. G. Grey, F. C. 
Brunck, Jacob Dold, Julius Fuchs, Solomon Scheu, Andrew Grass, F. 
A. Georger, John Hauenstein, Wm. Hellriegel, Stephen Bettinger, O. 
J. Eggert, H. Schanzlin, Paul Goembel, Jacob Hiemez, Philip Houck, 
Nicholas Ottenot, Henrj- C. Persch, J. F. Schoellkopf, Albert Ziegele. 

This is one of the few companies doing business in the State under 
what is known as the surplus law. This law gives fire insurance com- 
panies the privilege of limiting dividends to stockholders to seven per 
cent, per annum on the capital and earned surplus. The profits in 
excess of such dividend is divided into two funds known as the guar- 
antee surplus fund and the special reserve fund. The first named fund 
is liable, with the capital, for the payment of all losses by extraordinary 
conflagrations, while the special reserve fund would be used for the 
payment of other policy-holders who might suffer subsequent fire losses, 
without tedious delay. This plan places the company upon a basis of 
unquestioned security and has rendered it very popular with property 

So great has been the success of the Buffalo German Insurance 
Company that it found itself in position previous to the year 1876. to 
erect one of the handsomest and costliest structures in the entire city — 
the splendid building standing on the comer of Main street and Lafay- 
ette Square. It is an iron structure of symmetrical design and elegant in 
architecture, costing, with the ground on which it stands, $275,000. In 
this building are located the offices of the company, the German Bank 
of Buffalo, and many other offices. The present officers and directors 
of the company are as follows: — Philip Becker, President; Julius 
Fuchs, Vice-President ; Oliver J. Eggert, Secretary ; Frederick C. Haupt, 
Assistant Secretary; George A. Reinhardt, General Agent; Chas. A, 
Georger, Special Agent. Directors: — Louis P. Adolff, Philip Becker, 
F. C. Brunck, Charles Boiler, Adam Cornelius, John P. Diehl, Jacob 
Dold, Julius Fuchs, F. A. Georger, George Goetz, E. G. Grey, John 

Local Insurance Companies. 273 

Hauenstein, William Hellriegel, Jacob Hiemenz, Philip Houck, Michael 
Mesmer, Nicholas Ottenot, Henry C. Persch, J. F. Schoellkopf, Albert 

The Union Fire Insurance Company was incorporated in Buffalo, 
in 1874, with a capital of $100,000. The first board of directors were 
as follows: — Joseph Churchyard, President; Joseph Bork, Vice-Presi- 
dent; Simon Bergman, Michael Doll, Joseph A. Dingens, Jacob P. 
Fisher, Jacob A. Gittere, Henry Garono, Henry Hellriegel, Joseph L. 
Haberstro, Henry D. Keller, John Kelly, Jr., Pascal P. Pratt, John 
Henry Smith, George Sandrock, E. G. Spaulding, William Scheu, 
Joseph W. Smith, Arnold Weppner, George Zeiler, George W. Zink. 
Alexander Martin has occupied the office of secretary since the incor- 
poration of the company. 

The capital of this company was paid in cash and business begun 
by it as a stock company. It has met with excellent success in all 
respects. The present officers of the company are : — Joseph Churchyard, 
President; Henry Hellriegel, Vice-President; Alexander Martin, Sec- 
retary. The directors are as follows: — Joseph Churchyard, President; 
William Cochrane, Jacob P. Fisher, Charles Georger, Henry Garono, H. 
Hellriegel, Jos. L. Haberstro, Edward Heron, Robert Keating, Alexan- 
der Martin, Paiscal P. Pratt, Frederick Persch, George Sandrock, 
Thomas P. Sears, E. G. Spaulding, William Scheu, Henry M. Watson, 
Arnold Weppner, Dr. WiUiam Volker, George Zeiler. G. Frederick 
Zeiler. The offices of this company are located at 426 Main street. 

The Erie County Mutual Insurance Company Avas incorporated 
March 14, 1874. John P. Einsfield was the first president; John G. 
Lengner, the first vice-president, and M. Leo Ritt, the first secretary. 
The capital was $100,000, with 20 per cent, paid in. The business of 
the company is fire insurance only. The present officers are : — August 
Beck, President; Wm. Henrich, Vice-President; Joseph Timmerman, 
Secretary. Trustees: August Beck, Casper J. Drescher, Louis Freund, 
Peter Frank, Emil Gentsch, Ambrose Hertkorn, Wm. Henrich, Chas. 
Hammerschmidt, John A. Miller, Louis Rodenbach, Sebastian Schwabl, 
Ambrose Spitzmiller, Pliilip Steingoetter, Frederick Wagner and G. 
Frederick Zeiler. 

The Buffalo Insurance Company was organized in July, 1874, and is 
second in importance and business in the city only to the German Insur- 
ance Company. Its first officers were: P. P. Pratt, President; James 
D. Sawyer, Vice-President; Edward B. Smith, Secretary and Seneca A. 
Clark, Assistant Secretary. The original board of directors were: 
James G. Forsyth, Solomon Drullard, A. P. Wright, P. S. Marsh, 
Edward L. Stevenson, S. K. Worthington, and Henry C. Winslow, 
The capital of the company Avas placed at $200,000, and has remained 
so since. The capital is invested entirely in United States government 

274 History of Buffalo. 

bonds and the balance of its assets consists principally of cash in banks. 
The amount of premiums received by the company in 1874, the first 
year of its existence, was $90,000. In 1882 the amount had increased to 
$115,000. The total amount of premiums received is $1,318,000. Total 
amount of losses, $917,700. The company has now about thirty agencies, 
all located in this country. The present officers of the company are : 
P. P. Pratt, President ; Jewett M. Richmond, Vice-President ; Edward 

B. Smith, Secretary, ^nd Townsend Davis, Assistant Secretary. Office, 
200 Main street. 

The general insurance interests of Buffalo are well represented by 
numerous agencies some of which are so extensive in their operations 
and control the business of such strong companies that they may be 
briefly referred to as a prominent feature of the business of the city. 
The handsome offices of Smith & Davis are located at No. 200 Main 
street. The reader has already learned that Mr. Smith is now and for 
many years has been prominent in the insurance business of Buffalo. 
The firm was formed in 1870 and besides doing a very heavy fire insur- 
ance business, have also the largest lake business of any agency in the 
United States. 

The insurance firm of Fish & Armstrong, No. 56 Main street, was 
formed in 1861 and does a very large business which extends from New 
York to Chicago, on the canal and lakes. The firm has remained as it 
now is since its first formation, with the exception of a short time in 1873, 
when it was styled Fish, Armstrong & Co.; the present offices have 
always been occupied by the firm. The individual members of the firm 
are S. H. Fish and C B. Armstrong. 

Worthington & Sill, No, 46 Main street, established in 1868, are one 
of the leading insurance firms in the city ; they have offices also at 16 
Central Wharf. They occupied their present commodious offices in the 
spring of 1871, the offices having been fitted up by the Western Insure 
ance Company ; they will soon remove to still more elegant quarters on 
the ground floor of the new Board of Trade Building. The firm do both 
fire and marine insurance. The firm is composed of Henry S. Sill and 

C. G. Worthington. 

Flint & Dorr are a strong firm which has existed in its present form 
since 1881 ; but the business of the agency was formerly in the hands of 
Captain E. P. Dorr, who died in March, 1881. He was one of the most 
prominent men in the business here for many years. 

There are many other insurance agencies in Buffalo that transact 
considerable business, and over fifty agencies of all classes. Among those 
who have been in the business for many years, besides those already 
referred to, may be mentioned Nathaniel Hall, an insurance agent of 
more than forty years experience in Buffalo ; O. T. Flint, of the firm of 
Flint & Dorr, has been engaged in the business since 1852, and others. 

The Churches of Buffalo. 275 

On the 7th of October, 1856, a local Board of Underwriters was 
organized in BufiFalo for the first time. Its officers were A. A. Eusta- 
phieve, Presi,dent ; Edward Brewster, Vice-President ; William Lover- 
ing, Jr., Secretary and Treasurer. Ten years later, a new board was 
organized with E. P. Dorr as President ; E. B. Smith, Vice-President ; 
D. V. Benedict, Secretary and Treasurer. From that time to the pres- 
ent, except at comparatively brief intervals, a local board has been in 
existence in the city. 

The Buffalo Association of Fire Underwriters, as at present exist- 
ing, was organized in the fall of 1879. Fo*" a period preceding that time, 
losses by fire had been unusually heavy, not only in this city, but 
throughout the country, and it became necessary to obtain higher rates 
for insurance ; this organization was the result. The Association was 
formally incorporated in 1881. The officers are: — C. B. Armstrong, 
President (since organization) ; Alexander Martin, Vice-President ; C. H. 
Woodworth, Secretary (since organization) ; L. T. Kimball, Treasurer. 



The First Preacherin Buffalo— Early Missionary Work — The First Buffalo Charch Society — The 
First Church Building — Organization of the First Presbyterian Society — Names of the Mem- 
bers — History of the Church — Other Presbyterian Churches — Their Pastors and Officers — 
Episcopal Churches of Buffalo— -History of St. Paul's— Other societies of this Denomi- 
nation—The First Baptist Church and its Successors — Separate Church Societies — Catholic 
Churches ^ The Israelites and their Religious Societies. 

THE first preacher in Buffalo was undoubtedly the Rev. Elkanah 
Holmes, who was sent to the Seneca Indians by the New York 
Missionary Society, and " preached to the inhabitants of New 
Amsterdam." Meetings were held at irregular intervals in private 
houses and in the school-house, after it was built in iSoS-'oq. A son of 
Rev. Mr. Holmes married a daughter of Dr. Cyrenius Chapin, the con- 
spicuous Buffalo pioneer. Other missionaries followed Rev. Mr. Holmes 
to labor among the Indians, and occasionally preached in Buffalo. 

Turner is authority for the statement that a Methodist church society 
was founded in Buffalo in 1809, under direction of Rev. James Mitchell, 
but "it had no permanent organization ;*' it was re-organized in i8i8, his 
" primitive materials being eight persons who * called themselves Metho- 
dists, mostly transient and poor.*" In January, 18 19, the society had 

276 History of Buffalo. 

erected a small church, twenty-five by thirty-five feet, on Pearl street, 
nearly opposite the present site of the First Presbyterian church ; that 
was the first church building erected in BufiFalo ; it was built in forty- 
eight days and was dedicated January 24, 18 19, the Rev. Glezen Fill- 
more officiating; he was one of the most conspicuous preachers in 
BufiFalo in early days. 

The best available authorities give the date of the formation of the 
first permanent church Organization in BufiFalo as towards the last of the 
year 1809; the society was composed of Congregationalists and Presby- 
terians. The formation of this society is placed by some authorities as 
late as 181 2 ; but it was undoubtedly earlier, being followed at the latter 
date by the formation of the First Presbyterian society. The pioneer 
society was organized by Rev. Thaddeus Osgood, an itinerant minister ; 
the members were Mrs. Landon, Nathaniel Sill and wife, Mrs. Mather, 
Mrs. Pratt and a young man whose name is not known. 

The First Presbyterian Church Society was organized on the 2d day of 
February, 1812. Its original membership numbered twenty-nine. Their 
names were as follows : — Jabez B. Hyde and his wife Rusha Hyde, Saip- 
uel Atkins and his wife Anna Atkins, John J. Seeley and his wife Eliza- 
beth Seeley, Stephen Franklin and his wife Sarah Franklin, Amos 
Callender (ruling elder) and his wife Rebecca Callender, Comfort Lan- 
don, Esther Pratt, Jabez Goodell, (ruling elder), Nancy Hull, Ruth Fos- 
ter, Keziah Cotton, Nathaniel Sill (ruling elder) and his wife Keziah 
Sill, Keziah Holt, Nancy Mather, Sally Haddock, Henry Woodworth, 
Nancy Harvey, Sophia Gillett, Sophia Bull, Mary Holbrook, Betsey 
Atkins, Lois Curtiss, Sarah Hoisington. For nearly four years from its 
start, it bore the title of the First Congregational and Presbyterian Church 
of BufiFalo. At the end of that period, however, the name was changed by 
the unanimous vote of the society to its present form. The infant church 
sufiFered even more than others of its kind from the vicissitudes and perils 
of the war then waging. After the burning of the village in December, 
181 3, the meetings which had been theretofore held in the old court 
house were interrupted for nearly three years. May 3, 18 16, in a 
barn on the north-east corner of Main and Genesee street, the Rev. Miles 
P. Squier, a young man from Vermont and student from Andover, was 
installed in the pastorate of the first church, with a salary of $1,000. 
Here services were held once a week or oftener until May, 1823, when a 
building was erected on the site of the present structure at a cost of 
$874. By 1828 the congregation had outgrown their house and it was 
sold to the Methodists, who moved it to Niagara street ; they, in turn, 
transferred it to a German congregation by whom it was removed to 
Genesee street. Its religious usefulness having seemingly died out it was 
finally made an ice-house for the supply of a brewery and was taken to 
Walnut street where it remained until 1 882. During that year it was burned 

The Churches of Buffalo. 277 

to the gp'ound. The Presbyterians soon raised a fund sufficient to build 

a new house ot worship and on the 28th day of March, 1827, a new 

church edifice was dedicated, it having been constructed at an expense 

of $i7i5oo. Mr. Squier relinquished his post January i, 1824, having 

increased the membership of the society to 120. Experience had shown 

that it was impracticable to pay any pastor a salary of $1,000 at that 

time, and consequently the second pastor of the church, the Rev. Gilbert 

Crawford, who succeeded Mr. Squier in May, 1824, was secured for |6oo. 

In February, 1829, the Rev. Sylvester Eaton assumed the pastorate at a 

salary of $800. The remaining pastors of the church up to the present 

time have been as follows: — Asa T. Hopkins, installed February 17, 

1836; M. L. R, Thompson, November, 1848; Walter Clarke, D. D., 

April, 1864; David R. Frasier, 1872; and the present incumbent, Rev. 

Samuel S. Mitchell, D. D., November ist, 1880. Rev. Mr. Hopkins and 

Dr. Clarke both continued their pastorates until they died, the former, 

November 27, 1847, and the latter May 23, 1872. The building now 

used by the congregation has undergone no material change since its 

erection except that during Dr. Clarke^s administration the modern 

style of pulpit was substituted for the high pulpit before used. 

Lafayette Street Presbyterian Church, — The society of the Lafayette 
Street Church was organized July 13, 1845, under the name of the Park 
Church Society, by the election of the following named persons to con- 
stitute a board of trustees : — Reuben B. Heacock, George Kibbe, N. B. 
Palmer, C. A. Van Slyke, Orrin Edgarton, Lovel Kimball, George How- 
ard and T.-J. Winslow. The board was organized August i, 1845, by 
the election of the first three named respectively as president, clerk and 
treasurer. This organization was Congregational in its polity. October 
I, 1845, application was made through a committee to the presbytery to 
constitute a church in the place of the Park Church, to be known as the 
Lafayette Street Church, which was accordingly done on the i6th of the 
same month. The original members numbered but thirty, although at 
the first communion following, most of the members of the extinct Park 
Church joined it by letter. Messrs. Abner Bryant and Dwight Needham 
were the first elders. On the 19th of October, 1845, ^he Rev. Grosvenor 
W- Heacock was installed in the pastorate at a salary of $600. Services 
were then, and had been for about six months previously, held in the 
building known as the Park church. This edifice burned March 11, 
1850, but was immediately re-built. The lot fronting thirty-five feet on 
Washington street was bought in the spring of 1861. The present struc- 
ture was erected in 1862, at a cost of about $25,000, five feet having been 
added to the lot facing Washington street. In February, 1868, a new 
organ was purchased for $3,000. June 8, 1870, witnessed the celebra- 
tion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of Dr. Heacock's pastorate. During 
the twenty months intervening between November, 1872, and May, 1874, 

2jt WlSZ^jK-i OF BVFTALO. 

t'/e V.*rf. C P. H. Nason fc.Ied the Tacancr caused bj Dr. Heacock*s 
avv^^>e ;r» Europe. In November, 1^76, after a ministerial career erf 
tr,irty-orje jear%, devoted entirely to the veliare of the Lafayette Street 
0,-.ircb, the Rev. Dr. Heacock relinquished active work. On the 6th 
day of May^ 1^77, after a long and painful illness, he died. His life was 
corripJetely identified with the history of the city. He was bom here 
A'Jiitnt 3, tH2t ; he was the fifth son of Reuben B. and Abby P. Heacock, 
t^ie latter being the sister of Seth Grosvenor, of New York, the founder 
fA the Or'-z^venor Library. In 1840, he was graduated from the Western 
R^.%crvt C^Ahgtf and in 1844 from Auburn Theological Seminary. His 
fir%t V!rrmon wai^ preached in the old Park church June 8, 1845. On June 
13, 1848^ he married Miss Nancy Rice Stone, daughter of Jesse Stone, 
Uirmtrly of Brrx>klyn. 

f .^n Sunday, October 7, 1877, the Rev. Henry M. Parsons, of Boston, 
Ma%v, Slaving signified his acceptance of a call, began his engagement by 
officiating in this church at communion service. He was installed Novem- 
t/er t, and remained about a year and a half; he was dismissed November 
I, 1880. From then until October, 1881, the pulpit was vacant. Septem- 
ber 6, 1881, the Rev. Rufus S. Green was called from a pastorate in 
Morristown, N. J., and having accepted, began his labors October 23, 
1881. He was installed November ist Before Mr. Green's arrival about 
tS/yx; was expended in improvements. There are now four hundred 
and one members in the church and about two hundred and twenty-five 
in the Sunday school, the latter being superintended by George L. Lewis. 
The Milnor Street Sunday School, a branch of the work of this church, 
and undoubtedly the largest Sunday school in the city, has now about 
one thousand members. The average attendance for 1882 was six hun- 
dred and seventy-seven. Its superintendent is John Gowans. The fol- 
lowing are the present church officers: — pastor, Rev. Rufus S. Green, 
I). I). ; ruling ciders, Charles H. Baker, Charles G. Brundige, James 
W. Bixby, Samuel N. Lawrence, John Otto, George R. Stern ; dea- 
cons, George L. Lewis, Leonard B. Perry, Albert W. Shaw, Byron H. 
Westcott, Edward L. Chichester, Augustus M. Westfall; trustees, 
Loren L. Lewis, Alexander Brush, Willard W. Brown, Joseph P. Dud- 
ley, John Gowans, Cornelius M. Horton, Henry Childs, Alexander Mel- 
drum, Edwin Sikes. 

77// Central Presbyterian Church. — The Central Presbyterian Church 
of Buffalo, was organized by the presbytery of Buffalo on the 14th day of 
November, 1835, under the title of the Pearl Street Presbyterian Church, 
its charter membership numbering thirty-three. The first officers were 
Messrs. James L Baldwin, Reuben H. Heacock, Aldcn S. Sprague, 
George Stowe, Daniel R. Hamlin, James Cooper, H. H. Reynolds and 
W. G. Miller, none of whom are now living. They called to the pastor- 
ate Rev. John C. Lord, of Geneseo, who, prior to his study of divin- 

The Churches of Buffalo. 279 

ity had been a prominent member of the bar of Buffalo, and had been 
elected to judicial trusts. In 1836 they completed a church edifice at a 
cost of $35,000 on the northwest corner of Pearl and Genesee streets. By 
a unanimous resolution in 1842, they expressed their adherence to the 
General Assembly of the Presbyterian church of the United States, then 
designated as the " Old School." In 1848, the society reorganized under 
the name of the Central Presbyterian Church, and determined to rebuild 
on the opposite, (northeast) corner ; they erected a building with a seat- 
ing capacity of two thousand. The dedication of the new structure took 
place in 1852. In 1870 a co-pastorate was added and the Rev. A. L. Ben- 
ton, of Lima, N. Y., was called. He remained until 1872, when he accept- 
ed a call from the Presbyterian church of Fredonia, N. Y. Dr. Lord, 
after nearly forty years of successful pastoral work, offered his resigna- 
tion in September, 1873. He was succeeded by the Rev. Charles Wood, 
of Princeton Seminary, who remained until 1878, when he decided 
upon making a study, of the mission field by a trip around the world. 
The Rev. James McLeod of Batavia, the present pastor, immediately 
followed Mr. Wood. The church has always sustained a Sunday 
school, the present attendance at which is about two hundred and 

The Westminster Presbyterian Church. — The Westminster Presby- 
terian Church was organized September 3, 1854. The society was organ- 
ized April II, 1853, the following persons constituting the board of trus- 
tees : — Jesse Ketchum, Noyes Darrow, Isaac F. Bryant, James M. Gan- 
son, Moses Bristol, Alanson Robinson, William S. Vanduzee, Benjamin 
Hodge and Horace Parmelee. The chief projector of this church 
was Jesse Ketchum, for a number of years a prominent member 
of the First Presbyterian Church. In 1845 Mr. Ketchum bought the 
lot on which the Westminster church now stands, at a cost of $1,000. 
Two or three years later he built a chapel with another thousand. For 
a considerable period all attempts at organization failed, owing to the 
scarcity of population in that part of the city. Services were held in the 
church until after August, 1850, by the Rev. John Germain Porter, stated 
supply, to whom Mr. Ketchum personally paid a salar}^ of $800. In 
August, 1850, also, was organized the Delaware Street Sunday school, 
with an attendance of six teachers and thirty pupils. On the organ- 
ization of the society in April, 1852, $400 was added to the pastor's sal- 
ary, and the burden of payment removed from Mr. Ketchum's shoulders. 
The church organization was composed of forty members. On June 7, 
1857, Mr. Porter having accepted a call to the Union Presbyterian 
church of St. Louis, preached his farewell sermon. Rev. James Leonard 
Coming, of New York, was installed October, 1857, and remained until 
1859. A new church edifice erected in i858-*S9 which cost the congre- 
gation $19,200, was dedicated September 22, 1859. The Rev. Dr. Joseph 

28o History of Buffalo. 

H. Towne, from Rochester, began duty on a year's engagement as stated 
supply, June i, i860, at a salary of $1,500. In October, 1861, the Rev. 
Joel Foote Bingham was installed in the pastorate. His resignation was 
accepted November 8, 1867. On the evening of Saturday, September 7, 
1867, the church sustained an irreparable loss in the death of Mr. 
Ketchum. The Rev. Albert T. Chester, D. D., filled the pulpit as stated 
supply from July, 1867, to October, 1868. The next pastor, the Rev. 
Erskine Norman Whittf, was installed October 28, 18(58, and was dis- 
missed September 29, 1879. ^^ ^^^ ^ mission Sunday school was opened 
on the corner of Uticaand Rogers streets (now Richmond Avenue) under 
the superintendence of F. N. Jones, and a new chapel built at a cost of 
$3,000. In 1873 1^ ^^s turned over to the German Church of St. Lucas 
and the building sold to them. In 1874, the organ now in use in the 
church was bought for $5,505.56. On September 23, 1874, Dr. White 
sent in his resignation, which was accepted, and he was followed in Octo- 
tober, 1875, by the Rev. Isaac Riley, who died October 23, 1878. The 
present pastor, the Rev. T. Ralston Smith, D. D., was installed July 
9, 1879. The trustees are: — George Howard, president; Augustus F. 
Tripp,' vice-president; Burdett A. Lynde, secretary; William Perkins, 
treasurer; Ralph Plumb, John W. Brush, James B. Holmes, Henry C. 
French and Alfred Haynes. 

NoriA Presbyterian Church. — In the year 1847 ^he population of Buf- 
falo being then 50,000, it was seen that another Presbyterian church was 
needed to meet the demands of the growing city. On the 25th of March 
in that year, letters of dismission were granted to forty-three members 
of the First Presbyterian Church. These were the projectors and organ- 
izers of the North Church. The first pastor of the new church, the Rev. 
Charles Rich, entered upon the performance of his duties October 3, 1847, 
though he was not regularly installed pastor until the following January; 
meantime, December 29th, the church edifice was dedicated. The elders 
were Messrs. George B. Walbridge, Benjamin Hodge, and Chauncey D. 
Cowles, all of whom are dead. The Rev. Mr. Rich remained in his 
office but a year and a month. During the summer of 1849, through the 
cholera season, the Rev. Joshua Cook filled the pulpit. On December 23, 
1849, the Rev. A. T. Chester, D. D., became the regular pastor. An 
interval of thirteen months occurred between the close of Dr. Chester's 
pastorate in the fall of i860, and the opening of that of his successor, 
the Rev. Henry Smith, D. D., February 4, 1862. No fewer than 
eleven ministers filled the pulpit during this period. Dr. Smith closed 
his labors in the church in September, 1865, and was followed in Novem- 
ber, 1866, by the Rev. Wolcott Calkins, who continued in the office 
until February 1,1880. On the 22d day of February, 1880, the new 
Johnson organ was first used in worship. The present pastor, the Rev. 
William S. Hubbell, was installed December i, 1881. The church has 

The Churches of Buffalo. 281 

established two missions, the Harbor mission, in Dr. Pierce's old dis- 
pensary, on the Terrace, and the Eighth Ward mission. Its member- 
ship now numbers about five hundred persons. 

The Calvary Presbyterian Church. — On the 22d day of February, 
i860, this church was organised with a membership of forty-one. The 
first elders were Gustavus A. Rogers, M. S. Allen and William R. Allen. 
The first deacons were Wm. E. Lyman and Lorenzo Sweet. For nearly 
ja year the Rev. Dr. Reed acted as stated supply for the pulpit Then 
the Rev. A. T. Chester, D. D., preached for two or three years. The 
eiegant church building now used by the congregation was dedicated on 
July 8, 1862, both it and the parsonage being a gift of the late George 
Palmer. April 16, 1862, is the date pf the incorporation of the society, 
under the following named trustees: — ^John McArthur, James Duthie, 
John H. Selkirk, for one year ; George B. Ketchum, Lorenzo Sweet and 
Alonzo Tanner, lor two years ; John B. Skinner, William E. Lyman and 
Sherman S. Rogers, for three years. During the year 1864 the Rev. H. 
M. Painter filled the pulpit as stated supply. In April of 1866, however, 
the Rev. Alexander McLean was installed as the first pastor and 
remained with the church eight years. Rev. William Reed officiated 
from June, 1874, until 1881, since which time the church has been with- 
out a pastor. There are about one hundred and sixty members in the 
church at present. The present board of trustees is constituted of the 
following members : — Hon.. Sherman S. Rogers, president ; E. J. Hall^ 
sccretvy ; John Walls, John J, McArthur, Alonzo Tanner, David S. 
Bennett, George N. Prince, Merritt Brooks and Harlow Palmer. 

Thi Breckenridge Street Presbyterian Church. — By means of a careful 
scrutiny of the fragmentary records of this church the following facts 
have been ascertained : It was organized September 18, 183 1, under the 
name of the First Presbyterian Church of Black Rock, the meeting being 
held in the building now used for worship. The first ruling elders of 
the church were : Joseph Sill, James Gdrman and William Davis ; Joseph 
Sill also acted as deacon. The names of the Revs. R. G. Murray, Hugh 
Hamill and Sylvester Eaton, appear in the records as administering the 
sacraments, etc., in 1832. The Rev. J. D. Moore was stated supply in 
1840, and closed his labors in this church on March 19, 1843. ^^^ ^^^• 
J. C. Lord occasionally administered the sacrament. The Rev. Smith 
Sturges was called to the pastorate on December 3, 1845, ^^d was 
installed within a month. He was dismissed October 17, 1848. The 
Rev J. C. Knappis then mentioned several times as acting as moderator 
j^o tern, April 19, 1854, Rev. A. T. Rankin was moderator and continued 
his relations with the church until July 15, 1859. In the fall of 1861 the 
Rev. William Hall was installed in the pastorate, but his connection with 
the work here closed in six months. After Mr. Hall left the Rev. A. T. 
Rankin was appointed by a committee of the presbytery to act as mod- 

282 History of Buffalo. 

erator of the session. An item dated February 9, 1864, states that E. P. 
Marvin, who had then been preaching to this congregation for about 
two years, was ordained and installed as pastor. In 1866 Rev. A. T. 
Rankin is again referred to as pastor. From the early part of 1868 to 
1869, the Rev. P. G. Cook held that position. For a brief period in 1870, 
the Rev. Anson G. Chester was stated supply. Rev. Ansley D. White 
was elected pastor on October 30, 1870. In the summer of 1871 the 
property of the church, which had been previously held by a stock 
company, was transferred to the congregation and the building was 
repaired at a cost of $2,000. In 1871 or 1872, the name of the church 
was changed to the Breckenridge Street Presbyterian Church of Buffalo. 
On the I ith day of May, 1873, the Rev. William A. Gay, of Winnebago, 
Illinois, assumed the duties of the pastorate at a salary of $1,500 a year. 
In December, 1882, he resigned and went to Tonawanda. The present 
pastor, the Rev. Giles H. Dunning, of Dryden, N. Y., began his labors 
here on August i, 1883. There are now one hundred and seventy-two 
communicants in the church. The Sunday school, under the superin- 
tendence of Russell Weller, has attained a membership of about two 
hundred and seventy-five pupils. 

The East Presbyterian Church. — In 1864, under the pastorate of the 

Rev. Henry Smith, D. D., the North Church employed Rev. Henry 

Ward, then a student in the Auburn Theological Seminary, as a city 

missionary. On the 29th of May in that year, a mission Sabbath school 

was opened on Exchange street near VanRennsselaer street. When Mr. 

Ward returned to the seminary A. R. Ketcham became superintendent 

of the school and was ably assisted by teachers from the North Church. 

On the 22d of February, 1865, a commodious chapel was completed and 

occupied on Seneca street, under the supervision of Mr. Ketcham, of the 

North Church. Rev. George LeBotilleur, from June to September, 1865; 

Rev. Mr. Perry, from September to December, 1865 ; Rev. Robert Proc- 

tor, from December, 1863, to December, 1866; and Rev. R. D. McCar- 

thy from January, 1867, to May, 1867, were employed in the mission. In 

July, 1867, Mr. Ward, upon the invitation of the North Church, again 

took charge of the work. Up to this time, besides the Sabbath school, a 

Sabbath evening service and a prayer-meeting in the week had been held. 

Regular services were now begun and continued. The church was 

organized by the presbytery of Buffalo on the 21st of July, 1869, with 

sixty-five members, with Rev. Henry Ward as pastor, and Merritt 

Brooks and Thomas Olver as elders. The society was organized May 

31st, 1 87 1, with Alexander Brush, Joseph N. Mileham and Nicholas 

Olver as trustees. The lot on South Division street, near Spring, now 

occupied by the church, was purchased, and in September 1872, work 

was begun on the building of a church edifice. In 1875, the Seneca 

street chapel was sold and the building was completed. The present 

The Churches of Buffalo. 283 

bouse was first occupied the 14th of November, 1875, and from January, 
1876, the church ceased to be a mission and assumed its own support. In 
the first year after thfe present house was occupied one hundred and 
thirty-nine members were added to this church. The present member- 
ship is three hundred and fifty, with about four hundred in the Sabbath 
school. A. R. Ketcham, Merritt Brooks, Nicholas Olver, Meyers Gar- 
rett, D. W. Carney, with John Shaw, who is now in that position, have 
been superintendents of the Sabbath school. Merritt Brooks, Thomas 
Olver, Jonathan B. Williams, John Stuart, Duncan Colquhoun, Thomas 
Shaw, Henry Thomas, Guy C. Martin, Charles E. Porter, David O. Por- 
ter, have been elders, and of them the last six with the pastor, now con- 
stitute the church session. The trustees of the society have been Alex- 
ander Brush, Joseph N. Mileham. Nicholas Olver, Joseph W. Dennis, 
Henry Thomas, John Stewart, Guy C. Martin, W. W. Buffum, Duncan 
Colquhoun, C. K. Walrath, J. C. Post, Cyrus Nichols, Theodore R. Hen- 
shaw, Frederick Johnson. The last six of these now constitute the board 
of trustees. 

The West Side Presbyterian CAurcA.— The West Side Presbyterian 
Church was organized May 9, 1875, ^° ^ frame chapel on the corner of 
Sixth and Maryland streets, which bad been bought several years before 
by the First Church and used as a mission chapel. The original member- 
ship of the chapel was thirty-three. The first pastor was the Rev. G. G. 
Smith; the first elders were William L. Doyle, Edward J. Hingston, 
John W. Danforth ; first deacons, George Preisch and John A. Bell. 
The Rev. Herbert G. Lord, the present pastor, was called in the latter 
part of the year 1877. During the year 1881, the society bought a lot on 
the corner of Prospect avenue and Jersej' street, upon which they 
subsequently erected a stone edifice worth nearly $20,000. The building 
was dedicated Christmas day, 1882. Its present membership is one 
hundred and fifty. 

We/Is Street Chapel. — The Sunday school from which this body has 
grown was organized in August, 1865, in a building called the Soldier's 
Rest, on Exchange street. The first superintendent was the Rev. P. G. 
Cook, who has up to the present time been the leading spirit in the 
work. In 1870 the society removed the building in which they held 
services to the southwest corner of Wells and Carroll streets. The 
present building, on the northwest corner of Wells and Carroll streets, 
was erected in 1872. In February, 1874, Mr. Cook received a written 
request from a number of prominent members of the society, urging 
the organization of a church, with Mr. Cook as pastor. In March of 
the same year the church was organized with forty-five members. The 
chapel and site originally cost about $22,000, though the rise in the 
value of real property has increased its worth to $35,000. The church 
is in a good part of the city to wield a beneficial influence, and has 

284 History of Buffalo. 

unquestionably contributed not a little to the cause of reformation 
where reformation is much needed. 

The First United Presbyterian Church. — An organization which might 
be called the beginning of this church was effected here in 1835, the Rev. 
M. McFinney being settled as pastor. It was then part of the Associ- 
ate Reformed Church of America. The society, however, expired in 
1840, owing probably to the want of a house of worship. In 1847 meas- 
ures for a reorganization were set on foot and on February 28, 1848, the 
Asssociate Reformed Church was represented in Buffalo. The first rul- 
ing elders were David Boyd and James Duthie. There were thirty-six 
charter members. The pulpit was filled by visiting pastors until May^ 
1850, when the Rev. Clark Kendall was secured and was installed by 
the Presbytery of the Lakes, on the 27th of June following. Mr. Kendall 
continued his pastorate for twenty-two years. In 1850 the property 
now occupied by the church, previously used by a Dutch Reformed 
congregation and a Lutheran society was bought for the sum of $5,000. 
They immediately removed from the Young Men's Association building 
into their new quarters. Some time in 1857 the church in connection 
with the general body united with the Associate Church of America, 
and was afterwards considered a component unit of the United Presby- 
terian Church of North America. In 1867 the society was transferred 
to the care of the presbytery of Caledonia. In 1869 a mission chapel 
was erected on Hamburg street. The present pastor, the Rev. H. W. 
Crabbe, began his labors as successor to Mr. Kendall, on the first Sab- 
bath in April, 1873. The Sabbath school is co-eval with the second organ- 
ization of the Church. 

First Congregational Church, — The First Congregational Church of 
Buffalo was organized in May 1880, being composed of a number of the 
former members of the Lafayette Street Church. The organization 
took place in McArthur's hall, with about ninety members. The first 
board of trustees was composed as follows: L. H. Brown, H. D. Dem- 
ond, W. M. Knight, R. K. Strickland and Mr. Ketchum. Worship was 
held in this hall until about the middle of October, 1881, at which time 
the church had increased its membership to about one hundred and fifty. 
The church edifice on Niagara Square had just previously been boufi'ht 
of the Niagara Square Baptist Society, for $15,250. The building was 
also repaired and enlarged at an expense of about $11,000. The Rev. 
George B. Stevens, the first pastor, was called about the ist of June, 1880. 
He remained until December, 1882. Just before the contemplated dedi- 
cation of the newly-purchased edifice, it was damaged by fire and the 
dedication delayed until January, 1882. In January, 1883, the Rev. 
Frank S. Fitch, the present pastor, was secured at a salary of $2,250. 
The corporate society was organized in June, 1880, the first board of 
trustees being Wm. G. Bancroft, since deceased, Geo. R. Haynes, Hon. 

The Churches of Buffalo. 285 

Wm. W. Hammond, Seth L. Mason, Edmund J. Plumley, and Howard 
Winship. The only change since made in the board was occasioned by 
the death of Mr. Bancroft, Emmor Haines being chosen to fill the 
vacancy. The present membership of the Church is about two hundred, 

St. Paufs Churchy (Episcopa/.)— This, the mother parish in Buffalo, 
was organized February 10, 18 17, the Rev. Samuel Johnston, an Episco- 
pal missionary for the district west of the Genesee river, officiating. 
The first wardens were Erastus Granger, and Isaac Q. Leake ; the first 
vestrymen, Samuel Tupper, Sheldon Thompson, Elias Ransom, John G. 
Camp, Henry M. Campbell, John S. Larned, Jonas Harrison and Dr. 
Josiah Trowbridge. The first missionary of the parish, the Rev. Wm. A. 
Clark, was here in 1819 and 1820. The Rev. Deodatus Babcock fol- 
lowed in 1820 to 1824, the Rev. Addison Searle from 1824 to 1828, and 
the Rev. Everard Kearney in 1828. On September 13, 1829, the Rev, 
Wm. Shelton, the first rector who derived no support from the mission- 
ary fund, preached bis first sermon. The church edifice had been built 
in 1 8 19. It was a frame building of gothic architecture, erected at a 
cost of $5,000; the lot, a gift of the Holland Land Company, is situated 
at the junction of Erie, Pearl and Church streets. The Holland Land 
Company further granted as a gift to the parish, in 1820, one hundred 
acres of land near Lower Black Rock, the proceeds of the sale of which 
were used to purchase the lot on Pearl street on which the rectory was 
built in 1846, at a cost of $8,000. In 1851, under the administration of 
the already venerable Dr. Shelton^ the frame church building was 
replaced by the present stone edifice, on the former site. St. Paul's is 
considered the cathedral church of the diocese and contains the Bishop's 
chair which faces the nave at the entrance of the chancel. The 
consecration of this building took place under Bishop DeLancey, Octo- 
ber 22, 1 85 1. It was not entirely finished, however, until about 1870. 
Its cost has been over $100,000. Dr. Shelton resigned tbe rectorship, 
and was made honorary rector on January 11, 1881, having acted as rec- 
tor for this church over fifty-one years. He was at the time of his death, 
October 1 1, 1883, the clergyman ot the longest standing of any in the city. 
He was succeeded by the Rev. John W. Brown, D. D., March 31, 1882, 
who assumed his labors on May 7th, following. St. Paul's parish is free 
from debt. 

5/ James Churchy {Episcopal), — This parish was organized and the 
church incorporated April 17, 1854. The Rev. J. T. Eaton was chosen 
rector. Nelson James and John Lewis were the first wardens. Mr. 
Eaton remained in charge about two years. The Rev. L. S. Stevens 
was called in July or August of 1856, and continued for about ten years. 
The Rev. Geo. C. Pennel was called March i, 1857, and resigned 
November 28, 1868. The Rev. Theodore M. Bishop was made rector 
March i, 1869, and resigned in the early part of 1874. He was suc- 
ceeded by the Rev. Henry S. Dennis in April, 1874, who resigned Octo- 

286 History of Buffalo. 

ber, 1875. The Rev. Chas. H. Smith, the present rector, took charge 
January ist, 1876. A new house of worship is now building, on the site 
of the old church, on the comer of Swan and Spring streets. The cost 
of the new church will be about $18,000. 

Trinity Church {Episcopal.) — Trinity church was organized on Wed- 
nesday, October 12, 1836. The first wardens were : — Captain Samuel L. 
Russell, U. S. A., killed in the Seminole war, and Henry Daw. The 
latter remained warden until his death, in 1864. The first rector was the 
Rev. Cicero Stevens Hawks. Land on the comer of Washington and 
Mohawk streets was bought for $4,750, and what were at that time 
regarded as modern plans were adopted. A financial crisis delayed the 
completion of the building, the foundation of which, however, was laid 
soon. The congregation worshiped first in rented rooms in the second 
story of the old theatre on the comer of Washington and South 
Division streets, afterwards in the church on Washington street, rented 
from the Universalist society. In this building the [congregation 
remained until December, 1842, when the building onginally begun was 
completed in the plainest possible manner. The first rector was sue- 
ceededin April, 1844, by the Rev. Edward Ingersoll, D. D. Dr. Inger- 
soU was connected with Trinity church as rector and rector Emeritus, 
until the day of his death, in 1883. Between 1845 ^^d 1848 the church 
edifice was enlarged and a rectory annexed on the lot in the rear of the 
church facing Mohawk street. In 1874 the Rev. Dr. Ingersoll, having 
resigned, was succeeded by the present rector, the Rev. L. Van- 
Bokkelen, D. D. 

Christ Church {Episcopal.)— On the 4th of July, 1868, St. John's 
church, Buffalo, was partly destroyed by fire, caused by the fall- 
ing of a rocket on the roof of the tower. Owing to this accident a part 
of the congregation determined to leave the old site and erect a new 
building on Delaware avenue. Three lots were purchased on the avenue 
between Tupper and Edward streets, at a cost of $40,000, on which were 
to be erected a church, a chapel and rectory. The new parish was to be 
known as Christ church, Buffalo ; and the rector of St. John's church, 
the Rev. O. Witherspoon, was to be its rector. Plans for the edifice 
were obtained, and preparations were begun for the buildings. The 
plans, however, did not entirely succeed. The foundation for the church 
was laid, but the rectory was not even begun. Only the beautiful little 
building now known as Christ chapel was completed. It was begun in 
1869, and, as a circular addressed to the parishioners in 1875 states, it 
was " substantially completed "in 1871. The new parish went on for a 
while successfully J but passed out of existence in 1875, in difficulty and 
in debt. The lots were heavily mortgaged and the parish owed for 
interest and other liabilities, over $10,000, while its revenue from pew- 
rentals was not sufficient to meet the expenses. The chapel with all its 

The Churches of Buffalo. 287 

furniture, and the lot on which it stands, was to be sold at a sheriff's sale. 
At this crisis some faithful women who, by their exertions had accumu- 
lated a few hundred dollars for church purposes, stepped in and saved 
the furniture of the chapel, while the building itself and the lot on 
which it stands, wefe rescued by the bishop of the diocese, who bought 
them in for $10,000, giving his own bond and mortgage for that sum and 
taking the title to the property into his own hands. The lot on which 
the foundation of the church was laid, came into the hands of the late 
William G. Fargo, and the rectory lot reverted finally to its original 

From 187s to 1879 ^^^ chapel was carried on by the bishop, assisted 
by the Rev. M. C. Hyde, now rector of All Saints' church, Buffalo. It 
had no vestry and was entirely under the bishop's control. April 14, 
1879, ^^^^ ^^ consent of the bishop, a new parish was organized by the 
congregation worshiping in the chapel, which » was to be known as 
** Christ Church." The vestry elected was comprised of the following 
gentlemen : — Hon. A. P. Nichols and Theodore Dennis, wardens ; Hon. 
A. P. Laning, Hon William G. Fargo, A. S. Berais, J. C. Forsyth, H. B. 
Loomis, S. D. Colie, Edwin C. Robbins and C. Valette Kasson, vestry- 
men. The Rev. A. Sidney Dealey was called to be the first rector of the 
new parish and began his work on November 30, 1879, ^^^ ^^^ Sunday 
in Advent. 

On the first of March, i88t, a decided move was made towards pay- 
ing the mortgage held by the bishop so that the title to the parish might 
be in the hands of the corporation. This was happily accomplished 
and February 16, 1882, the church, free from debt, was consecrated. 

St. JohfCs Church {Episcopal}^ — This parish was organized on the 19th 
of February, 1845. The first wardens were : Selan Barnard and Gusta^ 
vus Denison ; the first vestrymen, L. D. Hibbard, Silas Heminway, Car- 
los Cobb, W. A. Bird, H. Rainey, Charles Pickering, James P. White 
and E. M. Martin. The first rector was undoubtedly the Rev. M. 
Schuyler, who administered the rite of the first baptism which took place 
in the new and hardly completed church edifice on January 30, 1848. 
Mr. Schuyler's name, however, first appears under date of July 20, 1845. 
The church building was begun in 1846, and finished in 1848, having cost 
nearly $34,000. Mr. Schuyler resigned the rectorship September i, 
1854. The next clergyman was the Rev. D. T. Warren, who officiated 
from September 3, 1854, to January i, 1855. On the latter date appears 
the name of the Rev. Samuel L. Southard, who was rector from that 
time until December, 26, 1865. On April 19, 1857, the Rev. William 
Bliss Ashley assumed the rectorship and remained until February 19, 
i860. He was succeeded on July 17, i860, by the Rev. Orlando Wither- 
spoon. Probably the most important event in the history of the parish 
occurred at 10 clock on the night of July 4, 1868. A sky rocket lodged 

288 History of Buffalo. 

in the steeple of the church setting fire to it and causing a damage to the 
building to the amount of $22,78940; all this loss was covered by insur- 
ance. On the 28th of March, 1869, Bishop Coxe re-opened the church, 
which had been closed since the fire, the congregation meanwhile wor- 
shiping in Kremlin Hall, Trinity church and elsewhere. The Rev. 
Joseph Cross was rector from June 6, 1869, to May 29, 1870. For nearly 
a year there was no regular clergyman, excepting that Bishop Coxe offi- 
ciated from January 13, 1871, until the September following. The Rev. 
Charles Avery acted as rector from March 31, 1872, until August 19, 
1875, followed November 10, 1875, by Rev. William M. Hughes. On 
April 29, 1883, Mr. Hughes preached his farewell sermon and was suc- 
ceeded May 6, 1883, by Rev. Samuel Richard Fuller. There are now in 
the parish three hundred families or seven hundred individuals, four 
hundred of whom are communicants. The officers are as follows : — 
wardens, D. B. Waterman, A. Sutherland ; vestrymen, James N. Mat- 
thews, Hon. Charles Daniels, Henry C. Fiske, C. W. Baldy, (treasurer,) 
G. D. Barr, E. W. Hayes, Seth G. Cowles, Jonathan Sidway, (clerk,) 
C. H. Daniels. 

Church of the Ascension^ (Episcopal.) — The incorporation of this pai^ 
ish took place on April 9, 1855, Isaac A. Verplanck and George C. Web- 
ster being on that day electeid- wardens, and the following being chosen 
vestrymen : — Orrin B. Tjtus, Jacob S. Miller, Dyre Tillinghast, Fred- 
erick P. Stevens, Jaoies G. Dudley, William Dickson, John Darrow and 
Hugh VanDeventer. For one year the Rev. Daniel F. Warren was rec- 
tor and was succeeded by the Rev. Orlando F. Starkey, who acted in 
that capacity about four years. On April .12, i860, a call was extended 
to the Rev. A. C. Patterson. His resignation was accepted April 25, 
1 861. The present rector, the Rev. John M. Henderson, formerly of 
Elizabethtown, N. J., received a call from this parish May 30, 1861, and 
entered at once upon his labors. For several years the parish occupied 
a wooden building erected as a mission chapel upon the site of the pres- 
ent edifice on the comer of North street and Linwood avenue. In 1867 
to meet the demands of the parish, the building was enlarged at an 
expense of about $1,700. In the following year the rectory was com- 
pleted, having cost about $3,500. In 1870 the parish decided to build a new 
edifice. The corner stone of the present building was laid by the Right 
Rev. A. Cleveland Coxe, Bishop of the diocese, May 9, 1872. The first 
service was held on Easter Sunday, April 13, 1873. The cost of the whole 
property is about $60,000. The accumulation of this property has been 
effected during the last seventeen years and during the administration of 
the present rector, the Rev. John M. Henderson, now passing his twenty- 
second year in this parish, which has been his only charge as rector. 

Grace Churchy {Episcopal.) — Grace Church was organized August io» 
1824. Services were held at first in a school-house by the Rev. Addison 

The Churches of Buffalo. 289 

Searle, from 1825 to 1830; by the Rev. Dr. William Shelton from 1830 
to 1840; and by the Rev. George Ogle from 1840 to 1842, the services by 
the latter being held in the Union meeting-house. From the last date 
until 1856 no services were held. In 1856 the Rev. R. I. Germain began 
services. The Rev. Herman G. Wood was rector from April 26, 1859, 
to November 10, 1863 ; the Rev. Geoige C. Pennell from March 20, 1864, 
to March 20, 1867; the Rev. Charles G. Gilliat from May 31, 1867, to 
December 31, 1870; and the Rev. Louis B. VanDyck from February 15, 
1871 to the present time. In 1859 the church edifice was built at a cost 
of about $3,500, and additions have from time to time been made. The 
building was consecrated in i860. In 1876 a chapel known as St. Mark's 
chapel was built at a cost of about $3,000, at lower Black Rock, in con- 
nection with Grace church parish. 

St. Mary' s-on-the-Hill^ (Episcopal^) — At a meeting held April i, 1872, 
for the purpose of incorporating a church, the following were elected 
the first officers: — James M. Smith and A. Porter Thompson, wardens; 
Charles Gibbons, Edgar A. Pickering, W. Y. Warren, O. K. Judd, 
Charles E. Bacon, Thomas Lothrop, Claude T. Hamilton and Richard 
R. Cornell, vestrymen. On the 17th of September, 1872, the Rev. Will- 
iam Baker was elected minister in charge, and Claude T. Hamilton clerk 
of the vestry. On March 26, 1875, the Rev. Charles S. Hale was asked 
to take charge of the parish. November 21, 1877, the Rev. C. F. A. 
Bielb}^ the present rector, was elected. During the summer and fall 
of 1882, the church edifice was enlarged and improved by the addition 
of an aisle, a new organ being purchased at the same time. O. K. Judd 
and B. B. Hamilton are the present wardens. 

All Saints Church, {Episcopal,) — This church is situated on the corner 
of Main and Utica streets, and was organized Easter Monday, 1879, ^s a 
free church to be supported by the free-will offerings of the congrega- 
tion. The corner stone of the edifice was laid on All-Saints* day, 1879. 
From that time until Easter, 1882, the congregation worshiped in the 
chapel adjoining the present church building. Through the liberality 
of the church people of Buffalo and by much hard work and self-sacrifice 
on the part of the rector and many members of the congregation, the 
prosecution of the business went on until the present results were accom- 
plished. The formal opening of the building was made on Easter Thurs- 
day, 1879. The church property is valued at $20,000. The Rev. M. C. 
Hyde has been rector of this parish from the first 

St. Lukes Churchy {Episcopal.) — This church was incorporated July 
20, 1857. The first rector was the Rev. William White, who began 
Easter Sunday, April 4, 1858, and resigned December 30, 1861. The 
Rev. John Kerfoot Lewis was rector from February 16, 1862, until July, 
1865; the Rev. Charles C. Edmunds from September 24, 1865, until 
Easter, April 17, 1870; the Rev. Edwin R. Bishop from October i, 1870, 

290 History of Buffalo. 

until Easter, 1873 ; the Rev. William F. Morrison, from August i, 1873, 
until March 28, 1875. The Rev. Walter North, D. D., the present rector, 
came on May 16, 1875. The church building now used was built on 
Maryland street in 1859 ^^^ ^^ '^7^ removed to its present site on 
Niagara street. It was then enlarged and somewhat altered. 

5/. Philifs Churchy {Colored Episcopal^ — The house in which this con- 
gregation worship was built in 1853, Dr. J. A. Prime, a Presbyterian 
clergyman, being authorized to proceed with the work on September 
28th of that year. It was used by the Presbyterians until 1863, Dr. 
Prime and the Rev. E. J. Adams being the respective pastors. In 1863, 
the building was bought from the Presbyterians and has since been used 
for the worship of St Philip's church. The services are devoted entirely 
to the colored congregation. The names of the several rectors who 
have officiated in the church successively are as follows: — Revs. O. 
Witherspoon, S. V. Berry, W. G. McKinney, J. R. Love, and the present 
incumbent, the Rev. David S. Moir. Mr. Love left in 1878, and was 
succeeded by Mr. Moir in February, 1879. Under the efforts of the lat- 
ter gentleman the church will soon be consecrated. The present war- 
dens are L. W. Blount and Mr. Gary. There are now eighty-six com- 
municants in the parish and about fifty-eight pupils in the Sunday 

Washington Street Baptist Church, — The year 1822 witnessed the 
organization of this church, the earliest of this denomination in Buffalo. 
Through the efforts of Mr. John A. Lazelle, who came to Buffalo village 
in 1818, a Baptist society was formed* which in 1822, requested the Rev. 
Elon Galusha, then of Whitesboro, to come among them as a missionary. 
He came on the i6th of February, 1822. At this time the Presbyterians 
were worshiping in the old court house, while a school house was 
opened to whomsoever might need it. The Rev. Miles P. Squier, of the 
Presbyterian church, offered his Baptist brethren the use of the court 
house and his offer was accepted. Owing to Mr. Galusha's able endeav- 
ors, the Baptist Church of Christ in Buffalo as it was called, was organ- 
ized April 3, 1822. Mr. Galusha remained only a few months and for 
some time after his departure, the church was deprived of a regfular 
minister. In July, 1823, Mr. John Newton Brown, a licentiate from the 
Hamilton seminary, was sent to the church, with which he remained 
until 1825. For two years afterwards the pulpit was vacant. The Rev. 
Eli B. Smith was pastor from June, 1827, to June, 1829. During his pas- 
torate the church built its first meeting house on the comer of Seneca 
and Washington streets, afterwards sold to private parties and used by 
the government as a post office. After Mr. Smith's resignation the 
church was more than a year without a pastor. The Rev. Jairus Handy, 
of Dunkirk, filled the pulpit from July 31, 1830 until May or June, 1831. 
The Rev.Elisha Tucker, of Fredonia, was called to the pastorate in 1831, 

The Churches of Buffalo. 291 

and remained until 1836. In 1832, the name of the church was changed 
to its present form. The present house of worship was built early in the 
year 1836, at an expense of about $24,000. The church took possession 
on Sunday, June 5, 1836. For a short period before Mr. Tucker's resig- 
nation, the Rev. Asahel Chapin, of Ashtabula, Ohio, was employed as a 
co-laborer with the pastor. Mr. Chapin succeeded in 1836, as pastor- 
elect, and remained until May, 1837. From this date until February, 
1838, there was no pastor. Then came the Rev. John O. Choules, who 
continued until August, 1840. The church at Black Rock was formed 
from this church in 1839, and in 1840 the beginning of the Niagara Square 
Baptist Church was made. The Rev. Levi Tucker, of Cleveland, 
labored in the pastorate from February, 1843 ^o December, 1848. A 
German Baptist church of twenty-three members was organized from 
this church, on February 14, 1840. The Rev. V. R. Hotchkiss officiated 
as pastor from April, 1849, ^o May, 1854. After a vacancy of a year 
the pulpit was again filled on May 6, 1855. until September, 1859, by 
the Rev. J. Hyatt Smith, of Cleveland. During his pastorate in 1859, 
the Cedar Street Baptist Church was formed with forty-nine members, 
from the Washington Street Baptist Church. For more than seven 
months after Mr. Smith's removal, the church was again without a pastor. 
Then the Rev. David Moore, of LeRoy, assumed the pastorate in May, 
i860, and stayed four years during which period a large portion of 
the Niagara Square Baptist Church were received into the member- 
ship of this church. Dr. V. R. Hotchkiss followed Mr. Moore in the 
pastorate, entering on its full duties a second time on May i, 1865. In 1868 
the Prospect Avenue Baptist Church was formed, eighty-seven persons 
being dismissed by the parent church on June 10, to constitute the congre- 
gation of the new church. Dr. Hotchkiss being in poor health,was granted 
leave of absence for one year on April 28, 1869, which he accepted and 
departed on a journey through Europe and Palestine. The Rev. H. H. 
Peabody supplied the pulpit from July 2d until the pastor's return which 
was in June, 1870. On the 3d of April, 1872, the church celebrated 
the fiftieth anniversary of its organization. Dr. Hotchkiss resigned in 
May, 1879, ^^^ died January 4, 1882. The present pastor. Rev. John 
Gordon, D. D., began his labors with the church November i, 1876. 

Owing to the rapid growth of the city and a desire to establish new 
Baptist churches, a number of the members were dismissed in 1882 to 
organize the Dearborn Street and Delaware Street Churches. The pres- 
ent membership of the church numbers five hundred and of the Sunday 
school two hundred and fifty. 

Prospect Avenue Baptist Church. — The Prospect Avenue Baptist 
Society which owes its existence to the missionary spirit of the Wash- 
ington Street Baptist Church, was organized after considerable delibera- 
tion on the 15th day of May, 1867. The first title of the society was 

292 History of Buffalo. 

the Ninth Street Baptist Society of Buffalo. The first trustees were S. 
H. Fish, W. H. H. Newman and W. A. Dobinson. The name of the 
society was changed to its present form in 1871. The church was 
organized June 10, 1868, and was followed by the organization of the 
Sunday school on February 11, 1868. 

The lot now occupied by the church building was bought October 
29, 1866, for $5,500. The building was first occupied February 27, 1868, 
and was dedicated June 11, of the same year. The cost of its erection 
and furnishing was about $20,000. During the early months of the 
church work the pulpit was filled by supplies. The first regular pastor 
ordained at the beginning of his pastoral career with this church, was 
the Rev. Horace F. Barnes, of Charleston, Mass., a graduate of Newton 
Theological Seminary. He assumed the duties of the pastorate on May 
2, 1869, and left in February, 1871. The pulpit was again filled by sup- 
plies until November i, 1872, when the Rev. E. E. Chi vers, the present 
pastor, having accepted a call from the church, entered upon his labors. 
For five months, including the summer of 1875, he was obliged on 
account of impaired health and failing sight to suspend his labors. 
Prof. A. J. Barrett, of Rochester, filled the pulpit in the interim. The 
work of building a new church edifice was begun early in the year 1880. 
The corner-stone was laid July 12, 1881. The building was dedicated 
November 28, 1882., It cost, inclusive of organ, furniture, etc., $50,570. 
There are about ninety members in communication with the church. 

Hudson Street Baptist Church. — Meetings were held preliminary to 
the establishment of this church, beginning in 1850, in the first Young 
Men's Association hall on the corner of Washington and South Division 
streets. On the first Sunday in September, 1850, they occupied the 
church formerly known as Dr. Lord's church, on the comer of Pearl 
and Genesee streets, and which they had bought for $5,000. The 
church proper was organized on April 15, 1851, the Rev. Geo. H. Ball 
D. D., being the first, only and present pastor. There were at the 
beginning thirty-five members. The first officers were as follows : — dea- 
cons, Silas Sweet, David N. Clark, Almeron Curtis, Eldrid Farewell, 
Stephen Dudley. In April, 1864, they sold their church edifice to George 
W. Tifft for $7,000 and on the same day bought the Niagara Square 
church for $8,000. This was in turn sold to the Congregationalists 
May I, 1882. The present lot on Hudson street was purchased on the . 
same day tor $6,500. The building recently erected, which was dedi- 
cated August 20, 1882, cost about $23,500. There are now two hundred 
and fifty members in the church. They aref^the only Free Baptists in 
the city. A mission is maintained by them on Jefferson street. 

Delaware Avenue Baptist Church.— This promising young church is 
an outgrowth of the Olivet Baptist Mission. It was organized on the 
8th of December, 1882, with a constituent membership of seventy-five. 

The Churches of Buffalo. 293 

forty-seven of whom came from the Washington Street Baptist Church, 
fourteen from the Cedar Street, three from the Prospect Avenue and 
eleven were miscellaneous. The church building was dedicated Febru- 
ary 15, 1883. The membership of the church on July i, 1883, was one 
hundred ; that of the Sunday school one hundred and seventy-five. The 
present pastor is the Rev. R. E. Burton. The trustees are Thos. Chester, 
Sherman S. Jewett, E. L. Hedstrom, Peter J. Ferris, Robert Z. Mason; 
deacons — Thomas Chester, E. L. Hedstrom, Peter J. Ferris, F. A. 
Hodge ; clerk, James F. Chard ; treasurer, Peter J. Ferris. 

The Cedar Street Baptist Church, — This church is located on the cor- 
ner of Cedar and South Division streets and was organized March 25, 
1859, being an oflfshoot of the Washington Street Baptist Church. Its 
original membership numbered forty-nine. The first pastor, the Rev. B. 
D. Marshall was installed in January, i860. He was succeeded by the 
following pastors : — In January, 1873, by the Rev. J. C. Kurd ; in Novem- 
ber, 1874, by the Rev. G. M. Peters; in the spring of 1 881, by the Rev. 
George Whitman, the present incumbent. The chapel was dedicated 
February, 2?, 1859, ^^ having cost $3400. Subsequent improvements and 
additions have raised the expenditure on the entire property to $47,635.31, 
all of which has been paid. The total church membership is now three 
hundred and fifty. 

Emanuel Baptist Church, — This church is the outgrowth of a mission 
established in, the vicinity of Rhode Island street and Fargo avenue, by 
the Prospect Avenue Baptist Church, March 31, 1871. On the 19th of 
June following, the lot now in use was bought and the building com- 
pleted in the latter part of January, 1872. On February 25th the dedi- 
cation of the structure took place, and the name of " Prospect Chapel '* 
bestowed upon it. E. C. Parker was the first superintendent, and W. A. 
Dobinson his assistant. The first session of the Sunday school was held 
March 3, 1871. In April, 1873, ^^ R^v. William Elgin, of Knowles- 
viile, was called to the field as pastor of the mission. He resigned in 
March, 1876, and was succeeded by the Rev. George C. Pratt, a student 
of the Rochester Theological Seminary. Mr. Pratt remained one year 
and resigned by reason of poor health. The Rev. R. H. Colby, of 
Strykersville, was called to the field in May, 1877, and began his work 
June I, 1877. Owing to the growth of the mission under Mr. Colby's 
administration, the church, under its present name, was organized Octo- 
ber 19, 1877. The original membership was eighty-three, fifty-seven of 
whom came from the Prospect Avenue Church. E. C. Parker and W, 
H. Case were chosen deacons, and W. H. Case, E. C. Parker, Robert F. 
Hazell, R. H. Bickford, C. W. Reynolds and Joseph Shaw trustees. Mr. 
Colby resigned in October, 1881, and the Rev. J. H. Langelle, the pres- 
ent incumbent, succeeded to the pastorate in December of the same year. 
There are now two hundred and twenty-eight members in the church, 
and three hundred and forty-five in the Sunday school. 

294 History of Buffalo. 

Dearborn Street ChapeL — In 1839 a number of the members of the 
Washington street church formed a society at Black Rock. The first 
officers were Rev. J. Sharpe and Hector Cutter. In 1844 they erected a 
chapel, the lot being donated by a Miss Porter, of Niagara Falls. The 
Rev. George R. Burnside is now the pastor. 

Michigan Street Baptist Churchy {Colored.) — The house in which this 
congregation worship was built in 1845, ^he first trustees of the society 
being William Quails, John Dandridge, James Thomas and Carr John- 
son. The present oflScers are : — N. Storam, J. S. Granby. Frank S. Fos- 
dick, E. L. Hedstrom, Thomas Chester and Ralph Dickens. Clergymen 
supplied every Sunday by the Baptist Union, speak to a congregation of 
twenty to thirty persons. There are about thirty children in the Sunday 
school, and five teachers. 

The First Methodist Episcopal Church. — We have already stated in the 
beginning of this chapter, that the Methodists were among the first of 
the pioneer religious societies in Buffalo, and that they built the first 
church ever erected here. It was a small frame building standing on the 
west side of Pearl street, near where the rink was built. It was after- 
wards moved up the street to near where Miller's livery stable is located. 
It was used by the Methodists until 1828. The locally celebrated Rev. 
Glezen Fillmore, D. D., who officiated at the dedication of this church, 
also organized the first Methodist Episcopal Sunday school in the city, on 
the 2;^th of November, 1827. In the first board of managers are found 
the familiar names of William Keene, Edward B. Smith, George Miller, 
Joseph Alexander and Silas Burton. The treasurer, William Sloan, 
having been sent from Buffalo to Batavia, remembered still the interests 
of his former home. He set forth to Joseph Ellicott in the land office of 
the Holland Land Company, the needs of the church in Buffalo. Mr. 
Ellicott directed his clerk to examine the map of Buffalo for a suitable 
location for a Methodist church. Mr. Fillmore soon discovered a lot on 
the north side of Niagara street, extending from Pearl to Franklin, and 
running back to an alley. The clerk filled out a deed for the lot and 
thus was secured the site of the Niagara Street Methodist Church. The 
structure was erected in 1832 and Mr. Fillmore was its pastor in 
1834, having been, as far as we have been able to ascertain, the first reg- 
ular pastor of the church. It was dedicated in 1835, at which time 
Jonas Dodge was pastor and Michael Segar presiding elder. This church 
which, as will be seen hereafter, was the parent of several of the other 
Methodist churches of the city, was sold to Mr. Fargo about i860, who 
transferred it to the Jewish society now occupying it. Available records 
of the work and the government of this old church are very meagre and 
little can ,be learned of it more than here given. 

Grace Methodist Episcopal Church. — This church is a continuation of 
the old Swan Street Methodist Episcopal Church which was orgtoized on 

The Churches of Buffalo. 295 

Friday, October 11, 1844. This was in turn an offshoot from the Niagara 
Street Methodist Episcopal Church, to which reference has already been 
made, which had theretofore held services in the building now occupied 
by the congregation of Temple Beth Zion. The first pastor of the 
Swan Street Church was the Rev. John Dennis, D. D., who remained 
until 1846. He was succeeded by the following named pastors: — Revs. 
Alpha Wright, i846-'48; James M. Fuller, 1848-50; S. Seager, D. D., 
i8so-'S2; A. D. Wilbor, D. D., 1852-54; R E. Brown, 1854-55. June 2, 
1855, the society moved to the present place of worship ; Grace Metho- 
dist Episcopal Church was dedicated on the same day by Bishop 
Simpson. Since that time the following pastors have been appointed : — 
Revs. W. H. DePuy, D. D., 1855-57; S. Hunt, D. D., 1857-59; A. D. 
Wilbor, D. D., i859-'6i ; D. D. Lore, D. D., i86i-'63; S. Seager, D. D., 
1863-64; J. H. Knowles, 1863-67; George P. Porter, 1867-70; D. H. 
MuUer, D, D., 1870-72; G. W. Paddock, 1872-74; R. C. Houghton, D. 
D., 1874-76; D. H. MuUer, D. D., i876-*77; S. N. Lloyd, 1878-80; R. 
N. Stratton, D. D., 1881. The present house of worship is valued at 
$30,000, the parsonage at $7,000. The membership of the church has 
increased to four hundred, and of the Sunday school to two hundred 
and fifty. 

Asbury Methodist Episcopal Church, — The old Niagara Street Metho- 
dist Episcopal Church was the parent of this as well as of the Swan 
Street (Grace) Church. The first meeting with a view to the organiza- 
tion of the new church was held in the Niagara Street Church by the 
trustees thereof on Monday evening, March 22, 1847. The original 
membership numbered sixty-eight. The lot on the corner of Pearl and 
Chippewa streets was bought for $2,700. The first meeting in the new 
building erected on this site was held June 16, 1848. The Rev. J. H. 
Waldee was the first presiding officer of the society sent by the confer- 
ence. Under his auspices a Sunday school was organized. In Septem- 
ber, 1848, the Rev. Schuyler Seager, D. D., was appointed the first reg- 
ular pastor of the infant church. The edifice was dedicated by him on 
the 23d of the same month. Dr. Seager's successors have been as fol- 
lows: — Revs. Eleazer Thomas, 1850 to 1852 ; H. K. Hines and L. Stiles, 
1852 to 1854; J- B. Wentworth, D. D., 1854 to 1856; E. E. Chambers, 
1856 to 1858 ; James Fuller, 1858 to 1859; W. H. DePuy, 1859 to 1861 ; 
P. R. Stover, 1861 to 1863 ; D. D. Lore, D. D.,.1863 to 1864; J. Allison, 
1864 to 1866 ; Allen Steele and D. H. MuUer, 1866 to 1869; A. D. Wilbor, 
1869 to 1870; J. B. Wentworth, D. D., 1870 to 1873 ; W. V. Kelly, 1873 
to 1874; George R. Strobridge, 1874 to 1876; C. A. Van Anda, D. D., 
1876 to 1877; T. J. Leak, 1877 to 1880; T. M. House, 1880 to 1882; 
George C. Jones, 1882 to 1883. In 1850, at the beginning of the pas- 
torate of Rev. Mr. Thomas, the name of the church was changed from 
the Pearl Street Church to Asbury Church, in honor of the Bishop of that 


296 History of Buffalo. 

name. At the same time a reorganization took place. In October, 1870, 
a new church edifice was projected. The new edifice was consecrated 
December 22, 1872, by Bishop Jones. The cost of the building Mas 
$38,885.64; organ, furniture, etc., $6,155.37. The membership of the 
church now numbers over four hundred. The present officers are : — 
trustees, H. H. Otis, president; Abram Twitchell, treasurer; A. J. 
Riegel, secretary; William Pooley, W. M. Citterly, Charles Nelson, 
Isaac Holloway. The Sunday school has an average attendance of one 
hundred and eighty. 

The Riverside Methodist Episcopal Church, Black Rock, — This is one 
of the oldest churches of this denomination in the city. The first 
Methodist preacher in this vicinity was the Rev. Glezen Fillmore, 
in 18 1 7. It became a regular appointment with a settled pastor in 
1820. Its entire early history is that of a prolonged struggle with 
poverty and discouragement. It seems to have entered upon a new life 
in 1858, with Dr. Smith as pastor. The earliest records of the Riverside 
Quarterly Conference now in existence reach back to the year 1863, 
when the Rev. J. M. Fuller was presiding elder and the Rev. A. D. WiU 
bor, pastor. The comer stone of the present elegant and commodious 
edifice, corner of Bird and West avenues, was laid September t6, 1872, 
and the dedication services were held on the 12th of April, 1874. The 
church was erected at a cost of $33,000 and its property is now valued 
at $35,000. It has a membership of over two hundred and twenty-five. 
The present pastor is Rev. George W- Peck, LL. D. The present officers 
of the church are as follows : — trustees, W. C. Earle, J. E. Rebstock, B. 
Woodall, J. S. Carter, M. Tilson, W. A. Scarle, George SheriflF, Alfred 
Bamett, Abner Adams ; stewards, J. E. Rebstock, C. W. Armstrong, 
W. C. Earle, W. A. Searle, George S. Searle, J. F. SieflFert, W. J. Woodall, 
J. S. Carter, Isaac Morris. The following have been pastors of River- 
side Church since 1847 • — Revs. L. L. Rogers, B. F. McNeal, W. Barret, 
W. Leak, S. H. Baker, H. Butlin, W. Luce, S. Parker, G. Smith, L. 
Welch, E. L. Newman, W. H. DePuy, A. D. Wilbor, W. S. Tuttle, A. P. 
Ripley, E. T. Green, O. S. Chamberlayne, G. W. Kittinger, J. S. Sim- 
kins, E. H. Latimer, S. McGerald, George W. Peck. 

Plymouth Methodist Episcopal Church, — This church had its origfin in 
a "class" organized in the year 1857 by the Rev. E. E. Chambers. The 
organization took place in what was known as the " Father Ketchum 
building,*' which stood where the Normal school now is. In this place 
the society continued to worship, without any regular pastor, but with 
occasional preaching by the pastors of other churches, till May, 1859. 
Then the meetings were moved to a chapel on North street, where a 
Sunday school had been held for some time under the management of 
members df the Niagara and Pearl Street Methodist Episcopal Churches. 
In 1861 the class was formally organized into a church and named the 
North Street Methodist Episcopal Church. In 1869 a church was built 

The Churches of Buffalo. 297 

under the pastorate of the Rev. R. E. Thomas, on the corner of Plymouth 
avenue and Jersey streets, and named the Jersey Street Methodist Epis- 
copal Church. January 25, 1873, iti the pastorate of the Rev. J. E. Bliss, 
the church was burned to the ground. On the 12th of July in the same 
year the corner stone of the present edifice was laid, on the opposite side 
of Plymouth avenue from the old sit^. At the same time the name of 
the society was changed to the Plymouth Methodist Episcopal Church. 
Between the burning of the old church and the taking possession of the 
new, the society worshiped in school-house No. 36. The chapel of the 
new church was dedicated March ist, 1874, when the Rev. P. R. Stover 
was pastor. The audience room was not completed till many months 
after, in the pastorate of the Rev. E. E. Chambers. Plymouth Church 
is now (in the year 1883) in a very prosperous condition. It has two 
hundred and thirty members and a Sunday school of three hundred 
pupils. It has no debt ; its congregations are large ; its revenues are 
ample. The list of its regular pastors is as follows : — Revs. W. M. Shaw, 
1862 ; DeBias Worthington, 1863 ; (no regular pastor from 1863 to 1865 ;) 
William Magavern, 1865 ; R. E. Thomas, 1867; J. E. Bills, 1870; P. R. 
Stover, 1873; C. C. Wilbor, 1874; E- E. Chambers, 1876; A. N. Fisher, 
1879; ^"d C. W. Winchester, 1882. 

5/. MarHs Methodist Episcopal Church. — The St. Mark's church was 
organized February 24, 1857. The first trustees were: — ^John A. Ryder, 
Caleb Coatsworth,John D. Roberts, John H. Bid well, Joseph McCIure, 
James H. Scatcherd, Barton C. Niles, Oliver Bond and Tobias Faust 
Services were for a short time held in a red school house which stood in 
what is now known as Scatcherd's lumber yard. The ReV. Griffin 
Smith, the first pastor, came in Jauuary, 1857, ^^^ ^b^ building in which 
the congregation now worship, was dedicated on the following Thanks- 
giving day. He was followed in 1859 by the Rev. W.'H. DbPuy, who 
remained until i860. His successors were as follows :— Revs. Hunt, 
Wilbor and Wentworth, the last of whom remained until October, 1864; 
Revs. S. Y.Hammond, 1864-66} J. E. Bills, 1866-69; S. P. Dickinson, 

1869-yi ; C.P. Clark, 1871 tospring of 1873 ; Hartley, to October 

1873; G. W. Kittinger, 1874-77; J. N. Simpkins, 1877-80; C. P. Hard, 
1880 to summer 1882 ; Rev. Mr. Cliff filled a three months' vacancy end- 
ing October, 1882 ; T. E. Bell, the present pastor, came in October, 1882. 

Delaware Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church, — This church is situated 
on the corner of Delaware avenue and Tupper streets. The lot has 
a frontage on Delaware avenue of one hundred feet and on Tupper street 
of one hundred and seventy-five feet. The church is a very substantial 
edifice, built of brown sandstone. The corner stone of the chapel was 
laid April 10, 1871, and of the main church May 21, 1874. The church 
was dedicated September 10, 1876. The society was organized October 
18, 1870, and reported at the close of the first conference year one hun- 

298 History of Buffalo. 

dred and six members; its present membership is about three hundred 
and fifty. Its first board of trustees was elected November 22, 1870, and 
consisted of James N. Scatcherd, John D. Hill, Charles A. Sweet, Fran- 
cis H. Root, James Howells, John C. Jewett, Edwin A. Swan, Robert 
Keating and George A. Preston. The Rev. Langford Hunt was the first 
pastor ; the second was the Rev. John G. Adams ; third, Rev. Ira G. 
Bidwell ; fourth. Rev. George W. Chandler; fifth and present. Rev. W. 
S. Studley. Its present board of trustees are James N. Scatcherd, John 
D. Hill, Charles A. Sweet, Francis H. Root, John C. Jewett, Robert 
Keating, James Howells, Henry Martin and Samuel B. Parsons. 

Eagle Street Methodist Episcopal Church, — This congregation owes its 
origin as a church to the missionary spirit of Grace Church. During the 
summer of 1871 the lot on which the church building now stands, having 
been bought through the efforts of the members of the Young Men's 
Association of the parent church, religious outdoor exercises were held 
at that place. The present edifice was built during the fall and winter 
of 1871 and '72. The Rev. D. H. Muller preached the dedicatory ser- 
mon. At the conference of 1872 the Rev. A. F. Colburn was appointed 
to the pastorate of the church. The church proper was organized 
November 17, 1872, at which time seventeen persons united with it. The 
first stewards were, Guy C. Martin, district steward ; Jabez Harris, 
recording steward ; Benjamin Woodall, John S. Carter, Errick Errickson. 
Mr. Colburn's successors to the pastorate have been as follows: Rev. L. 
T. Foote, three years ; Rev. C. Millspaugh, three years and the present 
pastor, the Rev. S. A. Morse, now (1883) in his second year. The pres- 
ent board of trustees is composed as follows : Homer Sanderson, presi- 
dent; Thomas Dark, Sr., W. H. Brush, George Lewis, John A. Miller, 
John H. Usher, Monroe Wilder. The present full membership numbers 
one hundred and fifty-five with about forty probationers. The Sunday- 
school superintendent is Richard Olivey. The school has a membership 
of three hundred. 

Glewwood Methodist Episcopal Church. — October 28, 1875, * niccting of 
fifteen was called at the residence of G. S. Rice, No. 13S Glen wood 
avenue, to establish a Methodist society ; H. H. Otis presided. There- 
after meetings were held in private houses in the neighborhood, the last 
one being held on Thanksgiving evening, November 25, 1875. Worship 
was subsequently conducted in a chapel on Glenwood avenue. For three 
years there was no regular pastor. Every fourth Sabbath in the month, 
services were provided by the Ladies' Temperance Union. A Sunday 
school was organized December 12, 1875, with H. H. Otis as superintend- 
ent. In October of 1876, the Rev. A. P. Ripley was appointed pastor 
by the conference. On May 19, 1878, a meeting was held to close up the 
society as an independent organization, whereupon it was adopted by 
the Delaware Avenue Church as a mission. The first " class " was then 

The Churches of Buffalo. 299 

iormed July 7, 1878, by the Rev. Ira G. Bid well, and called the Glen- 
wood Avenue Mission class. J. W. Wright was the first leader. In 
November, 1878, the Rev. V. Copeland became the first resident pastor of 
the mission and remained until the fall of 1880. The church edHfce was 
formally dedicated on Sunday, September 28, 1879, by the Rev. D. W. C. 
Huntington, D. D., presiding elder. The present pastor, the Rev. J. W. 
Johns, was appointed in October, 1880. The church was independently 
organized in November of the same year. The first trustees were as fol- 
lows: — A. D.Jackson, John Osborne, A. H. Nye, R. C.Wilson, J. L. 
Moore and A. H. Tracy. On November 22, 1880, the following named 
persons were elected stewards : — A. D. Jackson, A. H. Tracy, G. W. 
Smith, William A. McKay, Mrs. A. H. Nye, Mrs. John Osborne and Mrs. 
John Beam. The present membership of the church is about seventy- 
two and of the Sunday school about one hundred and sixty. 

First Free Methodist Church. — The organization and incorporation of 
this church took place on November 20, i860. Rev. B. T. Roberts offi- 
ciating. There were twenty-four original members. The society bought 
the old brick theatre on Pearl street near Eagle, and adapted it to the 
purpose of religious worship at an expense of about $5,000. The Rev. 
Loren Stiles, Jr., dedicated the building on the 19th of October, i860. 
The following pastors served the church in succession : — Revs. D. M. 
Sinclair, 1860^*62; Moses M. Downing, 1862-63; S. R. J. Chesbro, 
i863-'64; James Matthews, J. G. White and A. G. Terry, 1864-66; 
Epinetus Owen, i866-'67; occasional supplies, 1867-^68; A. F. Curry, 
i868-'70; S. R. J. Chesbro, 1870-72; W. H. Trevise, part of 1872-73; 
William Gould, 1873-74; G. W. Coleman, 1874-76; John T. James, 
i876-'77; W. T. Hogg, 1877-79; William Jackson, 1 879-^8 1 ; A. H. 
Bennett, 1881-^83. The old church edifice was sold in 1869 and the 
present brick building erected on the corner of Virginia and Tenth 
streets, at a cost of $10,000. The dedication of this structure was super- 
vised by the Rev. B. T. Roberts. In February, 1861, a Sunday school 
with about one hundred members was organized in the old Pearl Street 
Church ; Thomas Sully was its superintendent for many years. The 
present superintendent is George W. Johnston. A mission was begun at 
Black Rock in 1873, under the pastorate of Rev. William Gould. In a 
year a chapel, a small wooden structure, was built on Clinton avenue, 
at an expense of $2,500. It was dedicated on April 22, 1875, ^7 the Rev. 
William Gould, assisted by the Rev. B. T. Roberts and others. A Sun- 
day school was started in this chapel on the 2d day of March, 1875, Mr. 
George W. Johnston being its hrst superintendent. The mission, though 
known under the name of the Second Free Methodist Church, is in reality 
represented by the same officers as the parent society. The present 
trustees of the society are Rev. B. T. Roberts, George W. Johnston, 
James Wilcox, M. G. Cottrell, John A. Crane, W. J. Beyers, Thomas 

300 History of Buffalo. 

Sully. The present membership of the church is a little over one hun- 
dred and twelve. 

The African Methodist Episcopal Church,— T\v^ meetings which resulted 
in the organization of this church were first held in 1835, i" ^ house on 
what was then called Tom alley, now Carroll street. The meetings 
were usually led by Rev. Mr. Walker, of New York. The first trustees 
were : — Moses Burton, Charles Andrews and a Mr. Smith. Mr. Walker 
remained about a year, after which the Rev. George Ware was sent by 
the conference. They removed in i84i-*42 to Clinton street, near Elm, 
into a house now occupied as a family residence. Here they remained 
until the fall of 1843. In 1844 the Rev. Mr. Jackson was appointed to 
the pastorate. The present church was dedicated about July, 1845, 
having cost in the neighborhood of $3,000. After the expiration of Mr. 
Jackson's term the following pastors were sent by the conference: — 
Revs. Ware, 1845-46; C. Burch, (father of ex-Senator J. Henry Burch, 
of Louisiana); J. B. Campbell, (now bishop,) 1847; Mr. Jackson, James 
Morris Williams, Deacon Darrow, Mr. Pattison, William More, Francis 
J. Peck, William T. Catto, Abram C. Cripen, J. G. Mowbrey, Abram C. 
Cripen, Mr. Bailey, J. G.Mowbrey, (rejected by the congregation ;) Mr. 
Dartis and the Rev. J. J. Lewis, the present pastor, now in his second 
term. In 1882 the church edifice was remodeled and rebuilt at an 
expense of about $3,800. The present trustees are : — Joseph Lane, 
Alfred Keller, William Jackson, Frederick Wilson and John Johnson ; 
stewards, William H: Lloyd and Lewis Smith. 

Church of the Messiah,{Universalist^ — The First Universalist Church 
of Buffalo was organized on the 6th day of December, 1831. The first 
trustees were: Benjamin Caryl, Marvin Webster, Moses Baker, Ebe- 
nezer Day, James Durick and A. C. Moore. The first pastor was the 
Rev. Geo. W. Montgomery. A church structure was built on the east 
side of Washington street, a little north of Swan street, at an expense 
of $10,000. The second pastor, the Rev. William I. Reese, began duty 
in May, 1883. He was succeeded in October, 1834, by the Rev. Russell 
Tomlinson, who remained until the spring of 1837. The Rev. David 
Pickering came in at once and staid one year. On May i, 1843, *^he 
Rev. S. R* Smith became pastor and remained in that capacity until 
May, 1849. I" May, 1849, ^^e Rev. A. G. Laurie, was secured as a pas- 
tor. He was succeeded in May, 1854, by the Rev. Richard Eddy, who 
remained about a year. His successor, the Rev. E. W. Reynolds was 
pastor from May, 1855, to April, 1858, when he gave place to the Rev. J. 
H. Hartzell. The corner-stone of a new church was laid August 2, 1864. 
The edifice was consecrated on July 8, 1866, under the name of the 
Church of the Messiah. The building cost, with an organ then pur- 
chased, about $70,000. Mr. Hartzell resigned in March, 1870, after a 
conspicuously successful pastorate. In June of the same year the Rev. 
L. J. Fletcher assumed the pastoral duties of the church. 

The Churches of Buffalo. 301 

On Saturday night, October 29, 1870, the church building was 
destroyed by fire. By the 24th of the following September, the church 
was again ready for consecration. Mr. Fletcher left in April, 1879, ^"^ 
Mr. Hartzell returned in May of the same year, remaining two years. 
On the 4th day of September, 1881, the Rev. William E. Gibbs, the pres- 
ent pastor, came. About one hundred and forty families are connected 
with the church, and the membership numbers a little over two hundred. 
The Sunday school, of which the pastor is superintendent, has an attend- 
ance of two hundred and twenty-five. 

Church of Christ, — The Church of Christ in BuflFalo, the latest organ- 
ized of the nine congregations which represent the Disciples in the wes- 
tern district of New York, was established at a meeting held in the 
French chapel on the corner of Ellicott and Tupper streets on February 
20, 1870. There were thirty original members. For about two years 
the society, though without a regular pastor, held services once a week 
in the chapel. On April 13, 1872, A. J. Briggs, J. H. Grove and Bright- 
man Taber were elected trustees. The lot on the corner of Cottage and 
Maryland streets was immediatel}- bought and a chapel costing, with the 
lot, about 6,000 erected. The dedication took place November 28, 1872. 
The first pastor, F. M. Kibby of Kentucky, began his ministry in Feb- 
ruary, 1872, and remained about three years. He was followed by O. G. 
Hertzog. His pastorate lasted but a year. In June, 1876, G. L. Whar- 
ton was called to the pastorate ; resigning July 1 5, 1882, he was succeeded 
September i, 1882, by the present pastor, J. M. Trible. The member- 
ship of the church is one hundred and seventy-five. 

The First Unitarian Congregational Society, — This society was organ- 
ized in 1 83 1. Religious services were first held in the old court house 
on Washington street. The First Unitarian Church stood at the corner 
of Franklin and Eagle streets. Its cornerstone was laid August 13, 
1833. The Rev. William S. Brown, from Bridgewater, England, was 
the first pastor of the society from 1832 to 1834. He was succeeded by 
Rev. A. C. Patterson, who served from 1834 to 1836. The Rev. G. W. 
Hosmer, D. D., was installed October 16, 1836, and in 1866, resigned his 
pastorate. Rev. Frederick Frothingham was the next pastor from June, 
1867 to 1874, and was succeeded by the Rev. M. K. Schermerhorn, from 
1874 to 1876. The present minister. Rev. George W. Cutter, was 
installed February 4, 1877. In 1845 the first church was enlarged and 
remodeled. In 1859 it was damaged by fire but was at once refitted 
and refurnished. The comer-stone of the present handsome house of 
worship, the Church of Our Father, on Delaware avenue near Huron 
street, was laid October, 16, 1879. I* was dedicated, free of debt, Oc- 
tober 13, 1880. The Sunday school was organized in 1835. The society 
includes about one hundred and fifty families. 

The Friends, — The first meeting of " Friends" in BuflFalo was held in 
1865, in the house of Mrs. Martha Ferris, whose hospitality they con- 

302 History of Buffalo. 

tinued to accept until 1868. In that year the present meeting house on 
Allen street was built. The first trustees of the society were : — Elisha 
Freeman and Andrew Varney. The property is held now by the East 
Hamburg Friends. The society numbers between thirty and forty 

First Reformed Church of Buffalo^ {Holland). — The origin of this 
church, as nearly as can be ascertained, dates back to the year 1850. The 
first meetings were held in what is now called the Wood-market, on Gen- 
esee street. The first pastor was the Rev. C. C. Wutz, who staid two 
years and then removed to Rochester. In 1856 the place of worship 
was removed to a place in Boston alley. Then came the Rev. A. R. 
Kassen, under whose administration in 1863 the congregation moved 
again, this time to Milnor street. Some time about May, 1869, they 
bought a lot on Eagle street, near Cedar street, and built a church 
thereon. The Rev. H. K. Boer came in 1874 and remained about three 
years. Between the resignation or dismissal of one pastor and the 
installment of his successor, there was often a considerable period in 
which no pastor officiated and the weekly services consisted of the read- 
ing of sermons by a layman, the singing of hymns, etc. The incorpora- 
tion of the Dutch Reformed Church was not consummated until 1869 or 
1870, In 1882 the Swedenborgians bought the church property of the 
Dutch Reformed congregation, since which time the latter has become 
practically extinct and there is now no church of that sect in the city. 

Cold Spring Union Chapel. — In 1856 a small Sunday school was opened 
in the old district school house on the ground now occupied by police 
station No. 6. The room was furnished by William Tuton the superintend- 
ent, William A. Coots and D. R. Morse. Two years later C. B. Hunn 
became superintendent and was succeeded in i860 by Robert Johnson. 
In 1866 a society was organized and incorporated under the name of 
Cold Spring Sunday School Association. The first trustees and corpor- 
ators were : — Robert Johnson, Frederick Scott, P. A. Balcom, J. L. 
Alberger, J. E. Robinson and A. J. Holt. A lot on the corner of Ferry 
and Michigan streets was deeded to the Association by Charles and 
Malvina E. Barr, on which Cold Spring Union Chapel was erected in the 
following year. The chapel was formally dedicated in October, 1867, 
the Revs. Dr. John C. Lord and Dr. Hotchkiss officiating. Mr. Johnson 
was succeeded in 1869, by J. L. Alberger, with J. E. Robinson as assist- 
ant, who remained in office until 1878, when Mr. Robinson became super- 
intendent with Mr. E. B. Eggert as assistant. This society is the pioneer 
in religious work in this part of the city. The average attendance is 
one hundred and fifty. 

Catholic Churches.— Th^ diocese of Buffalo, established in 1847, com- 
prise* the following counties, all in the State of New York :— Erie, Niag- 
ara, Genesee, Orleans, Chautauqua, Wyoming, Cattaraugus, Steuben, 

The Churches of Buffalo. 303 

Chemung, Tioga, Allegany and Schuyler. Following are the officers 
of the diocese : — Bishops Right Reverend Stephen B. Ryan, D. D., C. 
M., consecrated November 6, 1868; Vicar General, the Very Reverend 
William Gleason ; Chancellor and Secretary, Rev. P. Hoelscher, D. D. ; 
Bishop's Counsel, the Very I^everend William Gleason, V.G., the Very 
Reverend H. Behrens, S. J., Rev. F. N. Sester, Rev. Edward Kelly, 
Rev. George Sniet, C. SS. R., Rev. P. Kavanagh, C. M. There are in 
this diocese ninety-nine secular priests ; seventy -four priests of religious 
orders; thirty priests engaged in educational institutions; one hundred 
and thirty-five churches and chapels ; twenty-seven clerical students ; 
eleven male religious houses ; thirty-nine female religious houses ; four 
colleges for boys ; eight academies for girls ; eleven charitable institu- 
tions and one hundred thousand catholic population. 

St Joseph* s Catholic Church. — After Buffalo was erected into an Epis- 
copal See in 1847, for three years there was but one English-speaking 
Catholic church in the city. At the end of three years, or on February 
6, 185 1, the corner stone of the St. Joseph's Cathedral was laid, the cer- 
emonies being conducted by the Right Rev. John Timon, first Bishop of 
Buffalo. Through the exertions of Bishop Timon, the cathedral was 
dedicated to the worship of God, and its altars consecrated on the 6th 
day of July» 1855. St. Joseph's Cathedral is one of the finest ecclesias- 
tical structures in the United States. It is located on the western side of 
Franklin street, near Swan. The south tower terminating in a graceful 
spire, contains the finest chime of bells on the continent. It consists of 
forty-three bells, from the foundry of M. Ernst Bollee, in Mains, France, 
which took the prize at the Paris Exposition of 1867, and cost, including 
duty, freight and expense of putting in place, more than $20,000. In 
order to relieve the Catholics of Buffalo of the heavy debt brought 
upon them by the erection of this cathedral Bishop Timon put forth 
great efforts 'to obtain the aid of the brethren throughout this country, 
Mexico, Cuba and all Europe. He succeeded and on the 30th of August, 
1863, he once more gathered in his brother prelates around him for the 
renewed consecration of the Cathedral. On November 8, 1868, the 
Right Reverend Stephen Vincent Ryan, C. M., was consecrated and 
installed as the successor of Bishop Timon. The vicinity of the cathe- 
dral has been much altered of late. A large stone Episcopal residence 
has been built on the site of the old Webster house, adjoining the cathe- 
dral on the south. A winter chapel has also been erected in the rear of 
the cathedral, connected with it and with the Bishop's house, by a 
covered cloister. These buildings harmonize in material and style with 
the cathedral, around which cluster St. Joseph's college and paro- 
chial school for boys, Miss Nardin's academy and parochial school for 
girls, the Young Men's Catholic Association building and St. Stephen's 
hall. The Rector of St. Joseph's is the Rev. Edward Kelly. 

304 History of Buffalo. 

5/. Peter's French Catholic Church. — Efforts were made as far back as 
1820 to establish a French church in Buffalo, several clergymen being 
sent at various times by Bishop Dubois and Bishop Hughes. M. Louis 
LeCouteulx de Caumont was one of the most zealous of the citizens in 
this work. The French and Germans united in forming the St. Louis 
church on the comer of Main and Edward streets, but after 1840 the 
German membership had attained such a majority that their French 
brethren determined upon secession and the establishment of a church 
of their own. To this plan the pastor of St. Louis, Father Guth, lent 
willing aid and encouragement, and in 1850 he was sent to Europe by 
Bishop Timon to collect for the diocese. After his departure until 1857, 
Father Chevalier and Father Morris officiated as pastors. Father Guth, 
however, never returned and Father Morris was appointed his successor. 
The act of incorporation of St. Peter's Church is dated January 8, 1857. 
The first regular pastor of this church after its separate organization 
was Father Klein, who, moreover, had succeeded Father Morris two 
years before. He was succeeded in 1850 by Father Sester. In February, 
1867, in obedience to the command of Bishop Timon, Father Sester 
resigned and went to Lancaster, N. Y. His successor, the Rev. Joseph 
Sorg, remained about a year, and the next pastor. Father LeBreton 
remained two years. Father Zoegle came immediately after Father 
LeBreton and stayed until 1871. Father Beckard, who followe'd, was 
pastor for six years. In 1877, Father Uhrick came, but being too old to 
continue his labors, was followed in 1880 by the Rev. John Caumer. 
The present pastor, the Rev. R. Faure, D. D., succeeded Father Caumer 
in November, 1882. Since his arrival the new parsonage next to the 
church has been finished at a cost of $6,000. The parochial school is 
under the direction of the ladies of the Immaculate Heart and one secu- 
lar teacher. 

St Patricks {Franciscan Friars,) — St. Patrick's Churc*h, Seymour 
street, near Emslie, was organized in January, 1854, with an estimated 
membership of four hundred families. The following are the names of 
the successive pastors, with the dates of their arrivals: — Rev. Daniel 
Moore, December, 1854; Rev. D. D. Deane, December, 1855 ; Rev. J. A- 
Early, August 27, 1857; Rev. A. McConnell, December 26, 1857. In 
1858 the Franciscan Fathers took charge of the church and have been 
there ever since. They keep three priests in attendance. The church 
was built in 1858 at an expense of $15,000. The present pastors are 
Father Angelus O'Connor, O. S. F., Father Lewis, O. S. F., Father 
Jerome, O. S. F. The parish now numbers about six hundred families. 
A parochial school building and convent were erected in 1862 at a cost 
of $20,000. There not being sufficient room in this school house, a 
new One is now building, which is intended to accommodate eight 
hundred pupils. 

The Churches of Buffalo. 305 

Church of the Holy Angels, — This church was organized in October, 
1852, in the old house on what is now Porter avenue, near Fargo ave- 
nue, formerly used as an asylum for the insane. The church bought o£ 
the estate for $13,000, eighteen acres of land comprising two blocks. 
On this lot stood then the X)ld poor house and the insane asylum. A day 
school was held in 1852 in the poor house and the asylum was fitted up 
for a chapel. This school had been started two 3rears before in the old 
St Joseph's cathedral. The first projectors of the church were Fath- 
ers Chevalier, SuUiran, Corbett and Maloney. The old college and sem- 
inary buildings were torn down in 1856. The present church was 
begun in the fall of that year, and completed late in 1857. The transept 
was added six or seven years ago. The adjacent parsonage was built in 
about 1873. The parochial school was completed in November 1881. 
It is conducted by the gray nuns. The total cost of these several build- 
ings was about $81,000. The membership of the congregation has 
increased from fifty families to four hundred. In about 1868 Father 
SuUiran returned to France and was followed in 1871 by Father Cheva- 
lier. Father Corbett left in 1857. Father Maloney is the only survivor 
of the pastors originally with the church, although he was absent from 
i860 to the fall of 1879. After Father Chevalier, Father Garrin had 
charge, and he was succeeded by Father Salfas. Father Guillard, the 
present pastor, has had charge for about ten years. 

St. StephetCs Church, — The date of the organization of this parish is 
December, 1875, at which time there were one hundred and fifteen in 
attendance. The Rev. Father McDermott, the present pastor was the 
first. The church edifice now used was built at once upon organization, 
at a cost of $6,000. At present there are two hundred families in the 
parish and two hundred and twenty-five children in the parochial school. 

St, John the Baptist, — The church of St. John the Baptist was organ- 
ized in the fall of the year 1867, the Rev. William McNab being the first 
pastor. He was succeeded five or six months after by the Rev. P. Glen- 
man, followed by Rev. P. Mazuret After a pastorate of a little more 
than three years, he was succeeded in December, 1871, by the Rev. John 
O'Donoghue. June 12, 1875, the Right Rev. Bishop Ryan appointed the 
present pastor, the Rev. Peter Francis Donohue. After much effort the 
new pastor succeeded in lifting a heavy mortgage which was resting on 
the place, and in 1883 he erected a school house capable of providing 
for the needs of two hundred and fifty children. The church is now free 
from debt. 

Si, Bridget's CAiir^A.— This church which is located on Louisiana street, 
comer of Fulton, was organized late in the year 1852, under Father Mac 
Mullen, pastor. There were about one ^hundred families then in the 
parish. The present church structure was built in 1859, ^^ ^ cost of not 
less than $15,000, by Father O'Connor, who took charge in February, 

3o6 History of Buffalo. 

1858, and died in December, 1870. The present pastor, the Rev. William 
Gleason, came in January, 1871. There are now about six hundred 
families in the parish, and a parochial school of nine hundred children. 

Church of Our Lady of Mercy. — This organization was established 
near the foot of Michigan street in the year 1874. The following pastors 
have since ofHiciated : — Revs. Daniel Welch, Dr. Holschcr, who was 
there seven years and William Morrison, the present pastor. The church 
structure cost $2,000, and was dedicated by Right Rev. Bishop Ryan in 
1875. There are now about one hundred and fifty families connected 
with the church. The parochial school has nearly one hundred children 
in attendance, who are taught by the ladies of the Sacred Heart, or 
Sisters of Miss Nardin's academy. 

Church of the Immaculate Conception. — The organization of this church 
was effected in about 1849, under the name of St. Mary's of the Lake. 
The first pastors were the Revs. Peter Brown and John Fitzpatrick. In 
about 1856 the present church building was erected by Rev. James 
M. Early, at a cost of about $30,000. Rev. M. Purcell followed 
Father Early and was succeeded by the following : — Revs. Thomas Glea- 
son, Edward Quigley, John O'Meara and the Rev. James Rogers, whose 
pastorate dates from April, 1877. The school in connection with this 
church was built and opened September i, 1882, with about two hundred 
pupils and three teachers, under the charge of the Sisters of St. 
Joseph's. The Sunday school in connection has about three hundred 
and fifty pupils. 

St. Stanislaus^ {Polish.) — The congregation of this church first assem- 
bled as a corporate body in June, 1873, with the present pastor, the Rev. 
John Pitass in office and Joseph I. Kaujwski and John Hordich as the 
leading lay members. The Rev. Peter Chowvnic was ordained vicar in 
the fall of 1882. Their first house of worship was erected immediately 
upon organization, on the corner of Townsend and Peckham streets, at a 
cost of about $1 1,000. The membership of the church has increased from 
fifty to between three hundred and four hundred families or one thousand 
five hundred members. A new church building of Lockport limestone 
is now being built, the value of which, it is estimated, will be not less 
than $100,000. The corner stone was laid with appropriate ceremonies 
on May 27, 1883. The parochial school in connection with the church 
has an attendance of about seven hundred pupils. On the completion of 
the new church building, the old one will be used as a school house. 

The Israelites and their Religious Societies. — The Israelites of Buffalo 
have exerted an important influence upon the business interests of the 
city and are a pacific and law^biding class. The first Israelite who 
lived in Buffalo was a Mr. Flersheim, an instructor of German from 
Frankfort-on-the-Main. He was here as early as 1835. Barnard 
Lichtenstein, the second known Israelite resident here, was in the city 
from 1838 to 1870, when he left for Waupun, Wisconsin. 

The Churches of Buffalo. 307 

The religious organizations of the Israelites, of course, stand alone, 
imique and peculiar. According to their law and traditions, ten male 
Israelites above the age of thirteen years, are alone competent to form 
a congregation which may hold divine liturgical services. 

The first public worship by Israelites, known to have been held in 
Buffalo, took place in Concert Hall, subsequently called Townsend Hall, 
on the southwest corner of Main and Swan streets, in the spring of 1847, 
for the celebration of the passover feast. The early Israelites, feeling the 
need of an incorporated body for the administration of rites in harmony 
with their religious education and belief, organized on October 3, 1847, 
into the Jacobsohn Society. There were eleven charter members as fol- 
lows : — Louis Dahlman, president ; Hirsch Sinzheimer, Moritz Weil, 
Emanuel Strauss, Joseph Mayer, Samuel Held, Jacob Loewenthal, Louis 
Rindskopf, Samuel Desbecker, Abraham Strass and Joseph Strass. They 
immediately bought and consecrated for burial purposes, a lot fronting 
on what is now Fillmore avenue, near Broadway. This, however, was 
abandoned July 19, 1861, for the present one on Pine Hill. The Jacob- 
sohn Society was in existence about five years. 

The old congregation, Beth Zion, was organized by the German 
Israelites, (in contradistinction to the Polish Israelites of Beth El,) 
November 27, 1850. There were eleven original members. The first 
board of officers were: — E. J. Bernheimer, president; Albert Strauss, 
vice-president and treasurer; Moritz Weil, secretary; Israel Drinker, 
David Kurtz and Jacob Strauss, trustees. 

The Rev. J. M. Slatky, who had been the first Rabbi of the congre- 
gation of Beth El, but who had dissociated himself from them, was 
engaged as minister for Beth Zion, at a salary, from ^December i, 1850, 
of $5 a month, and from May i, 1851, of $100 a year. He was not 
required to preach or teach, but simply to read the "Thora," or roll of 
the law, and to attend to the procurement of meat according to the 
scriptural and dietary laws. The congregation first worshiped in the 
dwelling house of Mr. Sinzheimer, No. 55 Oak street. On the i8th of 
November, 1857, long after the dissolution of the Jacobsohn Society, 
the surviving members of that body deeded their burying ground on 
Pine Hill, to Beth Zion. 

The next minister was Mr. Daniel Shire, who began his labors Jan- 
uary 6, 185 1. The congregation worshiped in various rented places, 
the last Dne before the " Reform " being the house on the northeast cor- 
ner of South Division and Elm streets. 

In September, 1863, in obedience to a desire on the part of many 
Israelites to conform their mode of worship more with the spirit of mod- 
em times and new associations, a number of the leading members of 
Beth Zion requested the Rev. Dr. Wise, of Cincinnati, to send them a 
minister to preach before them and others on the high feasts of New 
Year's day and the day of Atonement. Kremlin Hall was rented for 

3o8 History of Buffalo. 

the ceremonies ; this was the beginning of the reform movement — ^the 
reform being not a change in creed, but in the mode of worship by the 
introduction of modern service, choir singing, preaching in a known 
language, etc. A meeting preliminary to reorganization was held in 
Kremlin Hall on October 9, 1864. After some discussion and delibera- 
tion, a fusion with the old Beth Zion was effected. The new society was 
named Temple Beth Zion. The first officers were: — Siegmund Levyn, 
president; Siegmund Hofeller, vice-president; Jacob Altman, treas- 
urer ; David Rosenau, secretary ; Solomon Biesenthal, Leopold Keiser, 
Joseph E. Strass and Leopold Strass, trustees. The first minister was 
the Rev. L N. Cohen, who was succeeded November i, 1866, by the 
present minister, the Rev. S. Falk. 

The old Methodist Episcopal Church on Niagara street, just below 
Eagle, where this congregation now worships, was bought at once from 
William G. Fargo for $13,000, of which $7,000 was raised by immediate 
subscription. The building was adapted to the religious worship of the 
Je^s and dedicated by the Rev. Dr. Wise on Friday, May 25, 1865. In 
the fall of 1876, a new organ was procured at a cost of $2,000, and dedi- 
cated by two sacred concerts at the temple. The present officers of the 
temple are as follows : — S. Bergman, president ; Leopold Warner, vice- 
president ; Solomon Rosenau, secretary; Louis Weil, treasurer; Leo- 
pold Keiser, Leopold Marcus, Marcus Spiegel, Louis Jellinek, trustees. 

On December 23, 1877, an orphan asylum society was started here, 
comprising Israelites of this and other synagogues. This society, 
together with similar organizations in Rochester and Syracuse, have 
formed the Jewish Orphan Asylum Association of Western New York, 
and have an Orphan's Home in Rochester. They now have an accumu- 
lated capital of $45,000. 

The Hebrew Benevolent Society was originated in 1862. In March, 
1880, a Young Men's Hebrew Association was organized for literary and 
social purposes. They hold regular meetings at McArthur's Hall, and 
are in possession of a valuable library. 

In June, 1882, a heavy task devolved upon the Israelites of Buffalo, 
caused by the arrival here of hundreds of Russian refugees. Funds were 
at once collected, a suitable habitation was hired and shelter and food 
were given to the sufferers until employment could be found for them. 

Bethel Synagogue. — Bethel Synagogue was incorporated on the 13th 
of June, 1848. The first meetings were held in the Kremlin Block. Sub- 
sequently the society worshiped in a building on Pearl street, between 
Eagle and Court streets. The present synagogue on Elm street, between 
Eagle and North Division, was dedicated in August, 1874. The several 

ministers who have officiated at this synagogue are as follows : The 

Rev. J. M. Slatky, H. Rosenberg, J. Loewenthal (who came about i860), 
I. Werinsky, Philip Bernstein, B. Cohen (who came some time in 1879 
and remained until November, 1882), A. Bauer, and the present minister, 

Educational Institutions of Buffalo. 309 

the Rev. W. Berger. The present officers are I. N. Cohen, president ; 
N. Hyman, vice-president ; Henry Brown, treasurer ; Emil Bernstein, 
secretary ; A. F. Cohen, S. Dismon and J. Weisberg. A. F. Cohen was 
president of the board for the eight years ending in April, 1883. There 
are at present about thirty-fire voting members of the synagogue, though 
the general attendance is considerably larger. 

Britk Sholem. — Brith Sholem, or Berith Shalom, (Covenant of Peace) 
on Elm street, bet wen Broadway and Clinton streets, was organized 
about 1865. It is composed of Prussian Israelites. They lost their orig- 
inal charter and were re-incorpqrated in December, 1882, having in the 
meantime built and dedicated (August 24, 1873) a frame synagogue cost- 
ing about $4,000 ; their entire property is valued at about $7,000. A 
parochial school of twenty-six children is connected with the synagogue. 
The first minister was the Rev. Mr. Sullfort, who was followed by Rev. 
Mr. Worenski, and he, in 1869, by the Rev. D. W. Jacobson, who 
remained seven years. Mr- Jacobson returned in May, 1883. During 
his absence, the Revs. S. Poltoravitz and J. Broody officiated. 

Beth Jacob. — The congregation Beth Jacob, an offshoot from Brith 
Sholem, was organized on the first Sunday in October, 1881. The first 
minister was the Rev. Jacob Meyerberg. A lot was bought on the cor- 
ner of Clinton and Walnut streets and a synagogue erected thereon at a 
total cost of $4,500. The second minister was the Rev. Jacob Saperston, 
and the next, the Rev. Raphael Josephson, who came in April, 1882.* 
Their burying ground, comprising two acres, is situated on Doat street, 
About thirty-five families now belong to the congregation. 

A complete history of the German Churches of Buffalo will be found 
in the chapter devoted to the Germans of the city. 



The EmAf Scboc^s— Meagre Facilities for Obtaining Bdncatioii before the War of i8i3— Tbe Lite- 
raiyand Scientific Academy — The First Public School Building— A Quaint Subscription 
Paper — History of the Old School House — The First Teachers — A School Tax Roll of 
1818 — DistiicU Na's z and 3 ^ The *' High School Association **— Reoiganisation of the 
Cttj Schools — The Work of Oliver G. Steele, as Superintendent — Ward Coflamittees on 
School Improrement — Success of the Plans Adopted ^- List of School Superintendents — 
Description of Sdiools at the Present Time— The Normal School — Private and Parochial 
Educational Insitatioiis. 

THE wise policy of the American people in the early establishment 
of ample educational facilities as fast as the country has been settled 
and children have needed instruction, is acknowledged as one of the 
Strongest elements of her growth and prosperity, as well as the promoter 

3IO History of Buffalo. 

of a high degree of general intelligence among the masses. There is now 
in the city of Buffalo, an admirable and ample school system, comprising 
over a hundred different institutions, public and private, which has grown 
up with the place under the fostering care and unselfish labors of many 
of her most public spirited men and women. The inception and growth 
of this public school system and its contemporary educational institu- 
tions we shall endeavor to describe in this chapter. 

In the early days of Buffalo the youth of the place depended largely 
upon private schools for their instruction, which for some years offered 
better advantages probably than the common public schools ; the latter 
were organized under the then imperfect school laws and received very 
feeble support outside of local effort and liberality. A brief reference to 
the private schools that were conducted through periods of varjring 
lengths and with widely differing degrees of success, before the incor- 
poration of Buffalo as a city, will not be uninteresting and is worthy of 
place here. The greater portion of those private schools were taught by 
ladies ; those which were not were, as a rule, conducted by men who 
were partially engaged in other business. 

Hiram Hanchett probably taught the first school in Buffalo, in the 
" Middaugh House," in the winter of i8o6-'o7. In a paper on this sub- 
ject which was read before the Historical Society January 23, 1863, Mr. 
Oliver G. Steele stated that he was informed by Mr. Benjamin Hodge 
that " about 1807, a Scotchman by the name of Sturgeon, bom in Ireland, 
taught school on Main street. The house had but one window and that 
without glass ; plenty of Ught, however, was admitted through the open- 
ings between the logs. A small pine table and three benches made of 
slabs constituted the whole furniture. Mr. Sturgeon at first taught only 
reading, but afterwards at the urgent request of parents added spelling. 
Some twenty scholars attended. George Lyon and Benjamin Hodge, 
two of the older boys, acted as sub-teachers for the older scholars, while 
Mr. Sturgeon taught the younger children and did the whipping for the 
whole school. At that time there were about twelve houses between 
North street and Granger's creek." 

In 1810 or '11, Mr. Asaph Hall, at the request of Mr. Gamaliel St. 
John, representing a number of the inhabitants, began a grammar school 
in the court house. It was not continued very long. Miss Irene Leech 
kept school at an early day in a stone building, comer of Main street and 
the Terrace. 

It is probable that there were other schools similar in character to 
those mentioned, begun between 1807 and June i, 1812 ; but if such was 
the case no records of them have reached us. On the lattei date Asa 
Minor began a school '' in the front chamber of the brick building oppo- 
site the court house, for the purpose of instructing the youth in reading, 
writing, arithmetic, English grammar and the principles of elocution, if 

Educational Institutions of Buffalo. 311 

desired." In an advertisement dated May 30, 181 5, Miss Mary Kibbe 
announced that she " proposes to open a school for the instruction of 
children in the various branches, in the vicinity of the post-office." 
Monday, October 2, 181 5, David Page began a grammar school in the 
chamber of Mr. Folsom's house, on Genesee street. Deacon Amos Cal- 
iender taught school winters at this time in rooms in different places in 
the village, a portion of the time in the chamber of his own house on the 
east side of Pearl street, between Swan and Seneca streets. Mr. Wyatt 
Camp also taught a successful private school. He was a man of superior 
qualifications. Miss A. Page opened a school in the Masonic Hall, which 
was then located in John MuUett's house, sometime in March, 1820. On 
the 17th of April, 1820, Miss H. Bennett began a school over N. Ben- 
nett's store. Sometime during the year 1821, a Miss Georgen, from 
Montreal, opened a boarding-school ; we find no record of where it was 
located ; it was doubtless the first institution in Buffalo claiming the title 
of a boarding school. It was also in the year 1821 that a Theological 
Seminary was projected ; the Professors, as we are informed by a local 
journal, were inaugurated October loth of that year at the Presbyterian 

Early in April, 1823, Rev. J. Bradley rented a part of the theatre 
which stood opposite the Eagle Tavern, and began an English and classi- 
cal school there on the second Wednesday of May. Miss Terry began 
a school in November, 1826, "in the school room recently occupied by 
Mr. Peabody. Studies and tuition same as formerly.*' What was prob- 
ably the first distinctive writing school in Buffalo, was kept by a Mr. 
Rice in the summer of 1827. N. C. Brace conducted an academical 
school in 1824-25, the seventh quarter of which closed February 12, of 
the last named year. The Misses Radcliffe established a Young Ladies' 
Seminary August 2, 1826. For information, pupils were instructed to 
call at Mr. Ball's on the comer of Pearl and Court streets. Mr. J. Drew, 
opened a school in September, 1826, **a few rods south of the Mansion 
House, in a building erected for the purpose." The Misses Denison 
conducted a Seminary in 1830, the closing exercises of which were held 
at the Eagle Tavern; the second term closed April 15, 1832, and it was 
afterwards conducted for a time by the Misses Lyman. B. B. Stark 
began an elementary school over the office of Thomas C. Love, Exchange 
Building, in the spring of 1830, and October 10, 183 1, he taught an even- 
ing school *' in the school house on the Terrace." Miss Conklin kept an 
infant school in Lyceum Hall, beginning in April, 1832. We find notice 
in the local press of the founding of a somewhat pretentious " Literary 
and Scientific Academy" in April, 1832, the prospectus of which was 
first issued in July, 1829. It was first organized by James McKay and 
afterwards opened by Silas Kingsley as a boarding and classical school, 
commencing with one hundred and fifty pupils, then considered a great 

312 History of Buffalo. 

success. He continued the school until 1837, when the University of 
Western New York was opened in which the school was merged. The 
school was conducted in the brick building which formed a part of the 
late Sisters of Charity hospital, on the west side of North Pearl street, 
south of Virginia. 

It will be rightly judged by the reader of the foregoing list that 
Buffalo in her younger days, had little reason to complain of a lack of 
school advantages, if numbers alone were considered, whatever may 
have been the general character of the institutions. 

The First School Building. — The first and the only building devoted 
to school purposes (although it was undoubtedly often used for other 
gatherings) erected in Buffalo before the village was burned in 1813, 
was what was known as the "little red school house;" it stood on 
the northwest corner of Pearl and Swan streets. This building was the 
one that was built on the lot solicited from Joseph EUicott by Joseph 
R. Palmer, in August 1801, as detailed in the early chapters of this vol- 
ume. In the archives of the Historical Society is a little, coarse, memo- 
randum book; perhaps the most interesting and valuable local relic in 
existence) which gives an authentic account of the beginning of the little 
school house and how the necessary funds were raised with which to 
carry on the work. Following is a literal copy of the first page of the 
memorandum :* — 

" At a meeting of the inhabitance of the village of Buflaloe, meet on 
the 29th day of Alarch, eighteen hundred and seven at Joseph Landon's 
Inn by a vote of Sd meeting Zenas Barker in the Chair for the purpos 
to arect a School Hous in Sd Village by a subscription of the Inhabi- 

"also Voted that Samuel Pratt, Joseph Landon & Joshua Gillett be 
a committee to See that they are appropriated on the School House 
above mentioned which subscriptions are to be paid in by the first day 
of June next or such. part of it as Shall be wanted by that time. " 

Following is a list of the subscribers as they appear in the book, 
with the amount subscribed by each : — 

Levi Strong $ 5.00 

Sylvan us Maybee $20.00 

Zenas Barker 10.00 

Thomas Fourth 3.00 

Joshua Gillett 15.00 

Joseph Wells 7.00 

John Johnson 10.00 

Nathaniel W. Sever 10.00 

Isaac H. Bennett 3.00 

William Hull 10.00 

Samuel Pratt 22.00 

Richard Mann 5.00 

Isabel Adkms 5.00 

Samuel Andrews 1.00 

Garret Freeland i.oo 

Billa Sherman 87^^ 

In Mr. Steele's paper, before referred to, he said he had heard the 
names of Dr. Cyrenius Chapin, Gamaliel St. John and Joseph Landon 

*'* The memorandum book was presented to the Historical Society in 1866, by Joshua Gillettp 
of Wyoming county, whom I presume to have been a son of the Joshua Gillett who was one of the 
committee to raise funds and superintend the building. It was probably lying in a trunk in 1813, 
and was carried out of town and thus escaped the destruction which involved so many documents 
of that era." — Johnson* s History of Erie County. 

Educational Institutions of Buffalo, 313 

mentioned as subscribers to the school house fund. It is quite probable 
that they were so, although for some cause their names do not appear in 
the memorandum book ; th^y were all men who would have been most 
likely to contribute to the support of the budding cause of education in 
the village ; moreover in a litigation that occurred in after years, rela- 
tive to the site of the school house, Dr. Chapin claimed to have been 
one of the original proprietors. All of the subscriptions in the above 
list were dated March 30, 1807, the next day after the meeting was held. 
Each subscriber's name heads a page in the book ; below it is his sub- 
scription, followed by the credits of cash, labor or materials. The car- 
penter work was done by Levi Strong and George Kith, whose accounts 
are also in the book. Their bills for work amounted to $68.50. The 
building must have been begun very soon after the subscriptions were 
made, as the credits for work are mostly given in April. Joshua Gillett 
was credited with two and a half gallons of whisky April 13th ; from this 
circumstance Mr. Johnson in his history, naturally concludes that the 
** raising " must have occurred that day. The school house was not shingled 
until November, 1808, when Mr. Pratt furnished 2,000 shingles for that 
purpose ; whether the building was occupied at all before that date does 
not appear. Most of the subscribers to the school fund as they appear 
in the memorandum book paid their subscriptions in full; a few fell 
short to some extent. The total amount of the subscriptions was one 
hundred and one dollars. Five hundred dollars were allowed by the 
commissioners to pay for the building. The first teacher in this first 
school house was a Presbyterian minister named Samuel Whiting. Fol- 
lowing him Amos Callender taught there. A son of " Father " Elkanah 
Holmes, Hiram Hanchett and Mr. Tomlinson all taught there pre- 
vious to the war. 

Previous to 1840, the township included Black Rock, and down to 
about 1836 Tonawanda* also ; the school district organization conse- 
quently embraced all that territory. The first district embraced the village 
with the same boundaries as the city had under the charter of 1832. A tax 
roll is in existence which shows that a tax was levied in district No. i, in 
1 81 8, by which it appears that it then embraced the whole village; it is dated 
September 3, 18 18. The trustees were Heman B. Potter, Reuben B. 
Heacock and Elias Ransom. This is supposed to have been the first 
school tax ever levied in the village. The amount ordered to be raised 
was $554.25 ; the total real and personal property in the whole village is 
placed at $275,677. 

In an old record book which was presented to O. G. Steele by Will- 
iam Hodge before 1863, which dates back to 181 5, the territory about 
Cold Spring is called district No. 2 ; after about 1820 it appears as dis- 

* Buffalo, formed in 1810 from Clarence, included Tonawanda, Grand Island, Amherst , Cheek- 
towaga, and part of West Seneca. Amherst, including Cheektowaga, was taken off in 1836. Buf- 
falo city remained a part of the town of Buffalo until 1840. 

314 History of Buffalo. 

trict No. 3, probably on account of the formation of district No. 2 
within the village boundaries about that time. This district (at Cold 
Spring) was organized after considerable struggle in May, 18 16. Freder- 
ick Miller, William Hodge and Alvin Dodge were the first trustees. 

At a meeting in the district a motion was made to appropriate two 
hundred silver dollars for the purchase of a site for a school house ; but 
this was not agreed to. Another meeting was- held at the house of 
WiHiam Hodgfi, where a motion was made " that the trustees go for- 
ward at their own expense and repair the school house, and hire a teach- 
er;" this indicates that a house had been begun and left unfinished. 
This last meeting " dissolved without adjournment." In the following 
December an order was made to purchase a lot for sixty dollars, and that 
the district employ a teacher for another quarter; S. Fuller was employed 
under this order. 

To return to the first district of the village it appears that a school 
house was built, probably with the proceeds of the tax levied in 1818; 
but no lot was purchased then and consequently the school house was 
moved from one location to another; it was located on the Kremlin 
Block, then on the corner of Erie and Swan streets and afterwards on 
Pearl street. Amos Callender, a Mr. Pease and Rev. Deodatus Babcock 
taught in this school house. Among the pupils of the latter now living 
in Buffalo, is the Hon. O. H. Marshall. 

The second district in the village of Buffalo was organized probably 
in the year 1821, and its school was kept for some time in rooms at 
different points. In 1822 a school was kept on the west side of Main 
street, between Mohawk and Genesee ; this was the school that Millard 
Fillmore first taught in the village, afterward teaching in the Cold Spring 
district. At a little later date district No. 2 through one of its trus- 
tees, Mr. Moses Baker, " took up " the lot on the comer of Pearl and 
Mohawk streets for school purposes and a building was erected therefor 
the joint use of the district and the Universalist Church society the latter 
occupying the upper story. Peter E. Miles was the first teacher in that 
school. The building was abandoned a» a school about 1833 when 
a brick building was erected on Franklin alley. 

On the 22d of November, 1827, an educational institution was pro- 
jected in Buffalo from which great results were expected. This was 
known as the Buffalo High School Association. On the date above 
mentioned a meeting was held at the Eagle Tavern, to consider the expe- 
diency of establishing a " High School on the Monitorial and High School 
system." After proper discussion a resolution was adopted favoring the 
project and an act incorporating the Buffalo High School Association 
was drawn up which authorized a board of trustees to procure sub- 
scriptions to stock to the amount of not less than $10,000, and appointing 
Nathan Sargeant, Charles Townsend, Peter B. Porter, Wray S. Littlefield, 

Educational Institutions of Buffalo. 315 

Millard Fillmore, William Mills, Job Bigelow and Uriel Torrey a com- 
mittee to prepare and publish an address to the citizens in support of the 
object. The prospectus, terms, etc., were issued January 8, 1820. The 
first village directory in enumerating the public institutions of the 
place, says : — 

"Th« Buffalo High School, incorporated in 1827, capital not to 
exceed $25,000, $10,000 of which is already subscribed and the school 
commenced, in rooms temporarily fitted for the purpose, in January 
last. The buildings of this institution are to be erected the coming 

A fine building was erected (which now forms a part of the Hospital 
of the Sisters of Charity on Main street) ; the institution met with a fair 
degree of success for some years, but it seemed not to reach the demands 
of the time and died out. A military school was subsequently estab- 
lished in the building on the system of Captain Partridge, and was very 
popular for a time ; but it was too expensive to reach the body of the 
people and it, too, was closed. 

When the re-organization ot the city schools was effected in 1838, 
there were six district school houses in the place, \n which schools where 
taught as follows: — District No. 2, FY-anklin street (alley,); district No. 
12, Hydraulics; district No. 15, Perry street; district No. 16, Goodell 
street; district No. 17, South Division street; district No. 19, Louisiana 

In the year 1835 a great University was projected in Buffalo, but it 
never went farther than the Medical department, which became the basis 
of the present Medical College. 

In the winter of i836-*37, a law was. passed in response to discussion 
over the general inefficiency of the school system, authorizing the appoint- 
ment of a city superintendent of schools. Mr. R. W. Haskins was 
appointed under the act; but the law was so imperfect and so hampered 
the superintendent that he was unable to accomplish anything satisfac- 
tory to himself and he resigned before a year had elapsed. With his resig- 
nation Mr. Haskins recommended to the Common Council many needed 
amendments to the law which were afterwards incorporated in it. Mr. 
N. B. Sprague succeeded Mr. Haskins as superintendent, but declined 
the office for the same reasons that induced Mr. Haskins to resign. The 
Council then appointed Mr. O. G. Steele, who, at the earnest solicitation of 
Judge Hall, chairman of the committee on schools, accepted the position. 
This appointment was a most opportune one for the future good of the 
schools of Buffalo. Mr. Steele immediately made himself thoroughly 
familiar with the schools as they then existed, and his report of the sit- 
uation in which he found them reveals clearly their utter inefficiency as 
educational institutions. After a good deal of patient labor Mr. Steele 

♦ The numbers were under the old town organization. — Afr. SUelis Paper read before the HiS' 
iorical Society. 

3i6 History of Buffalo. 

completed a map which showed the boundaries of the different districts 
and secured the necessary data upon which to write a report to the Coun- 
cil ; this, with the map, was referred to the committee on schools and super- 
intendent, with power to prepare a plan of organization. The prepara- 
tion of the law under which the organization was effected devolved upon 
Mr. Steele and Judge Hall. They did not venture to propose an entirely 
free school system and the form of local organization was retained, with 
a low rate of tuition. A slight amendment was made to the law in 1839, 
which made the schools free, with the entire control placed in the hands 
of the council and superintendent The re-organization of districts was 
effected in 1838. The matter attracted a good deal of public attention 
and a series of meetings was held in the old court-house, the first of 
which was on the 31st of August. The late Hon. Albert H. Tracy pre- 
sided and Mr. Horatio H. Shumway was secretary. A committee of 
four from each ward was appointed, whose duty it was " to inquire into 
the condition of the schools in Buffalo, both public and private ; ascer- 
tain the number of children who attend school, the expense of their edu- 
cation, and report the same, together with some plan for the improve- 
ment of our schools, at a future meeting to be called for that purpose." 

This committee did its work most thoroughly and on the 19th of 
September made a full report, showing the inefficiency of the existing 
school system and detailing a plan for the complete organization of the 
city under an entirely free school system, under the authority of the 
Common Council ; the expense, above the amount received from the 
State, to be paid by a general tax upon the city property. 

After considerable discussion and not a little opposition, with a varia- 
tion in some of the details, this report was adopted and the following 
winter the schools were made free by act of the Legislature. 

The first school house erected under the new system was that on 
Church street, district No. 8. That was the district which once embraced 
the whole village. The lot was already in possession of the district but 
the inhabitants had not been able for some years to agree upon the 
erection of a building. A tax was levied and a handsome structure 
built, which drew out a spirited controversy upon the subject of its ma